Nigel Short wrote:
Andrew Paulson told me by Skype, in August 2013, that Kirsan Ilyumzhinov was the majority shareholder of Agon
The problem with this claim is that Kirsan Ilyumzhinov does not appear to to be the majority shareholder of AGON. So why would Paulson claim that he was? I could understand him claiming Kirsan wasn't the majority shareholder if he were, but why the other way round?
You bring up a good question that for some odd reason no one had before thought of asking: why in Godâ€™s name did Paulson tell Malcolm Pein and Nigel Short on various occasions that Ilyumzhinov was the majority shareholder of AGON?! And, if he did, how can he now maintain that itâ€™s not the case? Such simple questions, but I guess no one is really interested in 'getting to the bottom' of this, the surface is so much easier. But, as usual, the truth is more interesting!
The fact is that I told them about the Memorandum early on, in confidence, long before it was stolen (Nigel is being pedantic: a scan was copied) from my office. (One might even suspect that someone specifically ordered its theft, rather than it being offered to Kasparov out of the blue by poor Fontaine!) I told them of its existence for two very human reasons: (a) because they were my friends and colleagues, had heard rumours from Ray Keene (according to Nigel Short; he often sleeps on Ray's couch when he's in London) about conflict of interest and asked me about it, and I wanted them to have the precise story from me in context, and (b) to give them that context and get their sympathy by sharing with them the grisly process I was going through trying to do business with FIDE and get started with AGON. I was quite new and alone in the chess world, I was looking for guidance. They had/have a very black and white view of FIDE from the outside; I had managed to get inside this fascinating organisation and I was trying to give them detail that would help them 'understand.â€™ And in the process I was trying to understand it better, myself.
What they donâ€™t tell, conveniently, is that I discussed lots of other things with them (always separately, by the by) as well that would make their current narrative less black and white. Perhaps Iâ€™ll write a book about this some day. But other than describing the context of that Memorandum, how it came about, I never told them the Kirsan actually had 51% of AGON. Within a week or so the purloined Memorandum had been superseded by another understanding and subsequently by another and another as I extracted myself delicately from Kirsan's grasp. They know perfectly well that Ilyumzhinov is not now and never was a shareholder in AGON; thatâ€™s why they never go into much detail and donâ€™t ask your question. They were my friends who have thrown me under the bus at the behest of Kasparov who they already know with certainty is going to lose the upcoming election. Go figure that one out.
I'm always happy to answer questions.