Review: Bobby Fischer’s Biography By Frank Brady, The Holocaust & Disappearance of Fischer’s Notes On Soviet Chess Cheating
Fischer’s tapes containing his thoughts on the Soviet chess cheating were stolen from the Bekins facility. Fischer also said at his March 2005 Icelandic press conference that many boxes of his books concerning the Soviet chess cheating were stolen from the Bekins facility…Kasparov’s designation as history’s greatest chess player could help Kasparov’s political career after his retirement from chess.
This article continues the Bobby Fischer series which commenced with Reclaiming An American Hero: Bobby Fischer The Fearless Genius and continued with His Disastrous 9/11 Interview, How Would You Judge It Today and Chess Genius Bobby Fischer Was No Match For The Spiteful Self-Serving Fake News Media.
Bobby Fischer’s Biography
Frank Brady did extensive research in writing Bobby Fischer’s biography. In addition to obtaining access to the personal archives of Fischer’s chess mentor, Jack Collins, and Fischer’s mother, Regina Fischer, Brady obtained access to portions of the KGB and FBI files on Bobby and his mother. Brady also read just about everything that has been written about Fischer in English, listened to all of his broadcasts, read Fischer’s books and other writings, and talked to hundreds of Fischer’s friends and acquaintances. The result is an extremely well written and researched biography that provides valuable insights into Bobby Fischer’s life.
This article will discuss aspects of Bobby Fischer’s biography that can be improved upon.
Bobby Fischer’s Politically Incorrect Ideas
Frank Brady writes:
Many people who haven’t been formally educated awaken later in life with a desire to progress and deepen their view of the world, to go back to school or self-educate themselves. Bobby joined their ranks out of an essential self-awareness…
Bobby’s lack of traditional institutional education was well known and continually reported in the press, but what wasn’t common knowledge was that after he won the World Championship at age 29, he began a systemized regimen of study outside chess. History, government, religion, politics, and current events became his great interests, and during the 33-year interval from his first Reykjavik stay to his second he spent most of his spare time reading and amassing knowledge.
Fischer began to develop politically incorrect ideas from his readings. Fischer read The Protocols of the Elders of Zion and many other conspiracy books. He also became convinced that the so-called Holocaust was a major fraud. Fischer’s mother Regina wrote him stating that Nazi Germany had murdered children like vermin in homicidal gas chambers. Fischer, however, remained an outspoken critic of the Holocaust story.
Fischer would even tell Jews that the Holocaust was a myth. For example, Fischer was the frequent guest in the 1990s of Laszlo Polgar and his three outstanding chess-playing daughters, Zsuzsa, Zsofia and Judit Polgar. When Fischer told Laszlo that Auschwitz was not an extermination camp, Laszlo told Fischer about relatives who had been exterminated in it. “Bobby,” Laszlo said, frowning, “do you really think my family disappeared by some magic trick?”
Fischer also once refused to allow a Jewish chess player to enter his car until the man was willing to proclaim that the Holocaust was fraudulent. On January 13, 1999, during a live radio broadcast in Budapest, Fischer declared,
“As Adolf Hitler wrote in Mein Kampf , the Jews are not the victims, they are the victimizers!”
Fischer’s Politically Incorrect Ideas Examined
Frank Brady dismisses Fischer’s politically incorrect ideas as nonsense. Brady states that in response to Laszlo Polgar’s question of how Polgar’s relatives had disappeared in German concentration camps, Fischer “had nothing to back up his claim and could only refer to various Holocaust denial books.” Brady, who lists no Holocaust revisionist books in his Bibliography, fails to explain why Holocaust revisionist books are not a credible source of information. Why are books written by revisionists such as Dr. Arthur Robert Butz and Dr. Robert Faurisson not credible sources of information? Brady gives no explanation for his complete dismissal of what he calls “Holocaust denial books.”
As someone who has read approximately 150 books on the so-called Holocaust, I think anyone who objectively studied the subject would realize that the Holocaust story is a fraud. Neither Bobby Fischer nor I dispute that many Jews died in Auschwitz/Birkenau and other German concentration camps. What we dispute is that Jews died in homicidal gas chambers as a result of a German plan of genocide. The Jews who died in German concentration camps during World War II died mostly from typhus, typhoid and other natural causes, and not from a German program of genocide.
Frank Brady writes:
“Some of the many hate books Bobby read while in Budapest were The Myth of the Six Million by David Hoggan; On the Jews and Their Lies by Martin Luther, written in 1543; and Jewish Ritual Murder by Arnold S. Leese.”
Brady does not tell us why he calls these books “hate books,” or why these authors were not qualified to write their books. David Hoggan, for example, earned a Ph.D. in history from Harvard University and did extensive research in the archives regarding World War II history. Brady refers to Hoggan’s book as a “hate book” even though Brady never read it and Hoggan was well qualified to write the book.
Frank Brady refers to Fischer’s declaration during a live radio broadcast in Hungary that the Jews made up the Holocaust, and that the Jews are not the victims but the victimizers, as “hate-filled comments.” Brady ignores the fact that the Holocaust story is such a fraud that at least 19 countries including Hungary have made publicly disputing the Holocaust a felony. Brady also ignores the fact that the Bolshevik revolution was largely Jewish instigated, and that Israel was formed through the ethnic cleansing of the indigenous Palestinian population. Israeli historian Tom Segev writes,
“Israel was born of terror, war, and revolution, and its creation required a measure of fanaticism and of cruelty.”
Brady apparently considers these facts to be “hate-filled comments.”
Bekins Storage Theft
Bobby Fischer angrily stated that his valuable belongings in a Bekins Storage facility in Pasadena, California were stolen from him. Brady dismisses Fischer’s claim that his property was stolen:
The facts of Fischer’s loss of belongings are fairly straightforward: He’d been paying for storage costs for about 10 years, and his bin contained a large safe with such things as his letter from President Nixon congratulating him for his win in Iceland, his World Championship medal presented to him by FIDE, letters, score sheets, paintings, trophies, statues, scrapbooks, photos, books, and hundreds of other items. One great loss for the chess world was the original scores of games that Bobby played in a series of simultaneous exhibitions throughout South America and about which he planned to write a book, since he had played a number of interesting games during that time. If sold individually—there were thousands of games, according to Bobby—or as one large cache to a collector, the value of these score sheets alone would have totaled somewhere around $100,000.
Bobby had been giving [Robert] Ellsworth, his agent, about $5,000 a year to pay the storage cost and some minimal taxes on property—five lots—that he owned in Clearwater and Tarpon Springs, Florida, which were originally owned by his grandfather (Bobby bought them from his mother in 1992). Those various expenses came to about $4,000 a year; the $1,000 left over was for Ellsworth’s management. The storage room was registered under the name of “Claudia Mokarow and Robert D. James,” and since Ellsworth was paying the charges year after year, it is possible that the storage company had no idea that the material in the bin belonged to Bobby Fischer. Somehow Ellsworth had blundered—either through carelessness or a clerical error—and didn’t pay $480 that was owed, and as contractually agreed upon, the company had the right to dispose of the storage room’s contents. As soon as Ellsworth discovered his mistake, he felt guilty about it, and one can understand how heartbreaking it was to Bobby: “My whole life!” he said, outraged.
Ellsworth actually realized his error in time to attend the auction and buy back $8,000 worth of the material, not bidding on comic books and other memorabilia that he believed—wrongfully, as it developed—would no longer be of any interest to Fischer. Harry Sneider, Fischer’s former physical trainer, accompanied Ellsworth to the auction and Sneider’s son subsequently traveled to Budapest with 12 boxes of material. When he handed them over, Bobby said, “Where’s the rest?” He claimed to have at least 100 boxes in his storage unit and maintained that what had been brought to him was only 1% of his belongings.
Brady writes that Fischer gave 35 radio broadcast interviews expounding on his theory that he was a victim of a conspiracy involving a Jewish cabal, the U.S. government, the Russians, Robert Ellsworth, and the Bekins Storage company. Brady thinks that Fischer had lapsed over the years into a state of increasingly frequent paranoia.
However, Brady’s analysis of Fischer’s loss of valuable belongings in a Bekins Storage facility raises many questions that remained unanswered:
1) Why didn’t Bekins Storage contact Robert Ellsworth when the $480 rental payment was past due? This would be normal operating procedure for a rental company. Since Robert Ellsworth lived in nearby Los Angeles and had made timely rental payments for the last 10 years, Bekins should have been able to contact Ellsworth.
2) Most rental contracts provide for late payment penalties. However, I find it hard to believe that a storage company would have the right to auction off the entire contents of a storage unit to pay a past due bill of only $480. If the net proceeds of the auction were $100,000, for example, this means that Bekins would make a $99,520 profit from Ellsworth’s mistake. This would amount to an outrageous windfall for Bekins. An attorney such as Ellsworth should know not to enter into such an unfair agreement.
3) Robert Ellsworth says he realized his mistake in not making the annual payment before the auction was held. Ellsworth should have been able to pay Bekins the $480 past due plus penalties and returned Fischer’s belongings to the Bekins Storage facility. The auction of Fischer’s belongings should never have occurred.
4) Robert Ellsworth says he attended the auction and purchased $8,000 of Fischer’s belongings. Ellsworth did not purchase comic books and other memorabilia he believed would no longer be of interest to Fischer. Why didn’t Ellsworth contact Fischer before the auction and ask Fischer what he wanted Ellsworth to purchase? Harry Sneider’s son found Fischer in Budapest after the auction; why didn’t Ellsworth contact Fischer before the auction?
5) Since Fischer’s belongings were extremely valuable to him, did Robert Ellsworth or anyone else attempt to buy back Fischer’s belongings from the purchasers at the auction? Bobby Fischer had over $3,000,000 in a Swiss bank. I think Ellsworth could have located and bought back most of Fischer’s belongings sold at the auction.
Frank Brady’s explanation of how Bobby Fischer’s belongings were lost is not credible. The question is: Why would there be a conspiracy to confiscate Fischer’s personal belongings from storage?
The following section will provide a possible explanation.
Soviet Chess Cheats
Bobby Fischer repeatedly said that all of the World Chess Championship matches between Soviet grandmasters Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov were prearranged. Fischer said that prearrangement at the upper levels of chess tournaments was a common practice. Fischer said that Kasparov was a pathological liar, and that Kasparov and Karpov were criminals and chess cheats. Fischer stated:
“Kasparov should answer my charges! He should be put through a lie detector test, and then the whole world will see what a liar he is!”
Fischer told a friend as early as 1992 that he was planning to write a book that would prove how the Soviet players had cheated in chess. Fischer’s tapes containing his thoughts on the Soviet chess cheating were stolen from the Bekins facility. Fischer also said at his March 2005 Icelandic press conference that many boxes of his books concerning the Soviet chess cheating were stolen from the Bekins facility. With all of Fischer’s source materials stolen, Fischer was never able to write his book documenting the Soviet chess cheating.
Frank Brady attempts to dismiss Fischer’s claim that the Kasparov/Karpov World Chess Championship matches were prearranged. Brady writes:
Some people believed that Bobby was still stewing over the fact that he’d refused to play Karpov in 1975, and therefore was trying to belittle Karpov’s resulting match with Kasparov. Others held that his accusations were a ploy to promote his new Fischer Random chess. Still others chalked them up to simple paranoia. For his part, Bobby never explained what either Karpov or Kasparov had to gain from prearranging match results, except to keep the title in the Russian family. But since both men were Russian that made no sense.
No one can say with certainty why the World Chess Championship matches between the Soviets might be prearranged. One plausible reason for the prearrangement is that Garry Kasparov’s victories against Anatoly Karpov have caused many people to regard Kasparov as the greatest chess player of all time. Kasparov’s designation as history’s greatest chess player could help Kasparov’s political career after his retirement from chess.
Fischer stated that it took him one and a half years before he saw how Kasparov and Karpov had prearranged their matches. Fischer had worked diligently to document this prearrangement. I think Fischer would have written a truly outstanding book on the Kasparov/Karpov prearrangement if his extensive work and source materials had not been stolen from the Bekins Storage facility. Until Kasparov and Karpov take lie detector tests to prove their innocence, I am inclined to think that Fischer is correct that their World Chess Championship matches were prearranged.
Frank Brady writes:
“We may not—and perhaps should not—forgive Bobby Fischer’s twisted political and antireligious assaults, but we should never forget his sheer brilliance on the chessboard. After reading this biography, I would suggest that the reader look to, and study, his games—the true testament to who he was, and his ultimate legacy.”
Brady is correct that Fischer was a great chess player. Fischer’s chess games will always be an important part of his legacy. However, I think that Brady has not made a serious attempt to understand Fischer’s politically incorrect statements. I think that most of what Fischer spoke was the truth. Icelandic psychiatrist Dr. Magnus Skulasson correctly said about Bobby Fischer: “He was misunderstood. Underneath I think he was a caring and sensitive person.”
 Brady, Frank, Endgame: Bobby Fischer’s Remarkable Rise and Fall—from America’s Brightest Prodigy to the Edge of Madness, New York: Crown Publishers, 2011, pp. xi, 329-331.
 Ibid., p. 297.
 Ibid., pp. 212-215.
 Ibid., p. 260
 Ibid., pp. 266, 271.
 Ibid., p. 260.
 Wear, John, Germany’s War: The Origins, Aftermath & Atrocities of World War II, Upper Marlboro, MD: American Free Press, 2014, pp. 382-385.
 Brady, Frank, Endgame: Bobby Fischer’s Remarkable Rise and Fall—from America’s Brightest Prodigy to the Edge of Madness, New York: Crown Publishers, 2011, p. 266.
 Ibid., p. 271.
 Segev, Tom, The Seventh Million: The Israelis and the Holocaust, New York: Hill and Wang, 1993, p. 63.
 Brady, Frank, Endgame: Bobby Fischer’s Remarkable Rise and Fall—from America’s Brightest Prodigy to the Edge of Madness, New York: Crown Publishers, 2011, pp. 272-273.
 Ibid., p. 273.
 Ibid., pp. 236, 249, 252, 308.
 Ibid., p. 308.
 Ibid., p. 237.
 Brady, Frank, Endgame: Bobby Fischer’s Remarkable Rise and Fall—from America’s Brightest Prodigy to the Edge of Madness, New York: Crown Publishers, 2011, p. 309.
 For example, see http://www.factofun.com/top-10-best-chess-players-history/3/; also http://www.elist10.com/top-10-best-chess-players-history/; also https://www.chess.com/clubs/forum/view/top-10-greatest-chess-players-in-history.
 Geuzendam, Dirk Jan Ten, Finding Bobby Fischer, New in Chess, 2015, p. 277.
 Brady, Frank, Endgame: Bobby Fischer’s Remarkable Rise and Fall—from America’s Brightest Prodigy to the Edge of Madness, New York: Crown Publishers, 2011, p. xi.
 Ibid. p. 318.