It happened at the 1996 FIDE Congress and World Chess Olympiad in Yerevan, Armenia. A reform group had been formed in an effort to remove FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov. The Reform Group sought to replace him with Grandmaster Sunye-Neto of Brazil.
In Yerevan, bribes were openly paid and physical threats were made. At one point, Ignatius Leong, the delegate from Singapore, defected from the Ilyumzhinov group and, fearing that his life was in danger in Yerevan, hid in Steve Doyle's hotel room.
The reform group felt that they had enough votes to win and to throw out Ilyumzhinov. However, at a critical moment, Omuku of Nigeria, who was a member of the Reform Group, jumped ship and went over to the Ilyumzhinov side. Omuku, who brought many of the African nations with him, was rewarded for this by being made FIDE Geveral Secretary, a position which he holds to this day.
Steve Doyle, now realizing that with the African votes in hand, Ilyumzhinov had enough votes to win, decided to get some benefit from the situation, so he jumped ship too and went over to the Ilyumzhinov side. Doyle was rewarded for this act, which included disobeying USCF Policy Board instructions to vote for Sunye-Neto, by being made a Vice-President of FIDE, a position which he holds to this day.
Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, aided by the defections of Omuku and Doyle, won re-election. Doyle has served Ilyumzhinov well and later became famous for a Sumo Wrestling Match between Doyle and the Russian Chess Federation President Makrov in Moscow. The match was indecisive, since both Doyle and Makrov weighed more than 400 pounds, but Makrov, an opponent of Ilyumzhinov, eventually lost the political struggle.
Now, in 2002, Doyle comes up for re-election. The Redman Gang, led by Tim Redman, who is not nearly in the same weight class as Steve Doyle, nevertheless wants Doyle re-elected as FIDE Vice-President, contrary to the wishes of several USCF political figures. The Redman Gang has presented ADM 02-46, which states:
"The Delegates hereby reappoint Bill Kelleher to another term as FIDE Delegate, Jim Eade to another term as FIDE Zonal President, and nominate Steve Doyle to another term as FIDE Vice-President.
"Sponsors' Rationale: This team has worked effectively together and should continue to work on USCF's behalf in FIDE."
Question to the Voters: Does Steve Doyle deserve another term as Kirsan Ilyumzhinov's henchman?
PS We should make a movie about this. We can get Doyle and Makrov to play themselves.
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