The Lithuanian Jewish Community hosted a chess match May 27 to mark the 70th anniversary of the founding of the state of Israel.
Lithuanian Independence Act signatory Česlovas Juršėnas, Lithuanian Chess Federation president Aleksandras Černovas, first leader of independent Lithuania Vytautas Landsbergis and economics minister Gediminas Miškinis greeted players.
LJC executive director Renaldas Vaisbrodas distributed copies of Yitzhak Rudashevski’s Vilnius ghetto diary as mementos and prizes to the winners. About 70 players in all age groups turned out for the event.
Before the tournament began the book “Jews in Lithuanian Chess History” was presented. Česlovas Juršėnas said: “Look at the achievements of the Jewish people, why are so many people of this ethnicity Nobel Prize winners, very accomplished businesspeople and extraordinarily talented specialists in their fields? Really it’s because from early childhood parents tell Jewish children they are very intelligent. Chess encourages strategic thinking, problem-solving and exercises the mind. The Jews are an intelligent people, we need to follow their example.”
Lithuanian Chess Federation president Aleksandras Černovas greeted players, wishing them: “May strong intellect, resolution and the honorable battle, which chess promises, escort you in your personal lives as well.”
Lithuanian economics minister Gediminas Miškinis said he was impressed and encouraged by the chess tournaments organized by the LJC and the Roitsan Maccabi Elite Chess and Checkers Club, and wished players success and a long series of victories.
After prizes were distributed Vytautas Landsbergis and Boris Rositsan played a friendly match.