Saturday, October 31, 2015

Getting into Trouble

Credit: Chess Vibes
We noted that Adrian (or, in the source quoted, Avraham) Schwarz had played in a tournament when he was a deserter from the IDF, and MPs came to catch him at the tournament; it turns out that the exact tournament was the youth test tournament of July 1963. Schwarz 'registered to the tournament despite the fact that his legal standing vis-a-vis the army's command does not allow him to play or to guarantee his attendance' -- that is, he might be thrown in jail for desertion if caught -- and that 'he is responsible for the disruptions caused when the police terminated his participation', which 'brought chess into disrepute'.

Quite apart from being pursued by MPs, then, Schwatrz had to deal with him severely: a one-year suspension from chess tournaments. That, hoped the ethics committee of the ICF, will 'keep him from loving chess to a degree that causes dereliction of his national duty' [to serve in the IDF].

The sordid details are found on p. 9 of Shachmat, vol. 2 no. 9 (21), April 1964. We are not clear why he is named 'Avraham' (i.e., Abraham) here -- is this due to the common (at the time) practice of changing names to "pure" Hebrew ones, or are we in fact (which seems unlikely given my sources) dealing with two different people?

Chess and Politics, 1964 Olympiad

Credit: Shachmat, vol. 3 no. 4 (28), November 1964
In the "Chess and Politics" file, we add the following photo, on the cover of Shachmat from November 1964, with the self-explanatory title, 'World Champion Petrosian is welcomed by president [of Israel] [Zalman] Shazar'.


Shachmat mistakenly put 'October 1964' on the front cover of the issue, despite the fact that it was in fact the November issue; this may well be due to the magazine switching back and forth at the time between "real" print and multi-lite print, and encountered various other technical problems. The new editor (Eliyahu Fasher) warned the readers in advance, in the "real" October 1964 issue (p. 3) to expect such issues.

Chess and Science Fiction

Credit: the Science Fiction Encyclopedia Gallery
We have occasionally noted the connection between art and chess on this blog (see "art" in the labels), and sometimes, note issues not dealing with Israeli or Palestinian chess, but with chess in general.

Here is one common example: chess used as a motif for book covers, in this case, a science fiction anthology, by (according to the SFE) Amabel William-Ellis and Michael Pearson. Indeed, there is even an anthology, Pawn to Infinity (eds. Fred and Joan Saberhagen) about chess and science fiction:

Credit: See link above
The book is a collection of science-fiction related chess stories, and indeed, these stories go back a long way, all the way to Gargantua and Pantagruel, as the SFE entry for 'chess' shows.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Young Problemist

Source: Shachmat, March 1964 (Vol. 2 no. 8), p/ 16

The following problem is not particularly good, admits the editor (Hillel Aloni) of Shachmat's problems & studies section. But -- he adds -- it has a saving grace. The composer, Ron Eisenstein, was... seven years old!

Shachmat adds, on the next page, a letter (written by his father in Ron's name) that he started learning chess in Kiryat Ono at the age of six and a half, with the instructor Itzchak Aloni; won a prize as a solver in Davar's chess column, and continues to solve problems in the newspapers. 

Edward Winter, in C. N. 2184 (also in King, Commoners, and Knaves p. 234) gives a younger problemist -- Elliot Franklin Eichholz, age five (source: American Chess Bulletin, May-June 1917, p. 132), also -- unsurprisingly -- a simple mate in two.

Do the readers know of any other very young composers?

(Highlight below for the solution)

1. Kh6