What happened to the real Bobby Fischer?

Answered by James Kissner

Bobby Fischer, a legendary chess player, had a tumultuous life after his rise to fame in the chess world. In 2004, he found himself in a difficult situation when he was arrested in Japan. The reason behind his arrest was his use of a passport that had been revoked by the US government.

Fischer’s arrest in Japan led to a lengthy legal battle and several months of detention. He faced deportation to the United States, where he would have had to face the legal consequences of using an invalid passport. However, his situation took an unexpected turn when he was granted Icelandic citizenship by a special act of the Icelandic parliament.

This act allowed Fischer to live in Iceland until his death in 2008. The decision to grant him citizenship was met with controversy and divided opinions. Some argued that Fischer should face the legal repercussions of his actions, while others believed that his contributions to chess overshadowed his passport issues.

Throughout his life, Fischer made significant contributions to the game of chess. He revolutionized the way chess was played and analyzed, introducing new strategies and ideas that are still studied and utilized today. Fischer’s famous match against Soviet grandmaster Boris Spassky in 1972, known as the “Match of the Century,” captured the world’s attention and brought chess into the mainstream.

Despite his brilliance on the chessboard, Fischer’s personal life was marked by eccentricities and controversies. He became increasingly reclusive and held strong and often controversial political views. His anti-American and anti-Semitic statements further added to his notoriety.

In his later years, Fischer’s mental health deteriorated, and he became more isolated from the world. He rarely played chess professionally and instead focused on his own personal beliefs and grievances. His death in 2008 marked the end of a complex and polarizing figure in the world of chess.

Bobby Fischer’s life took a dramatic turn when he was arrested in Japan for using a revoked passport. Despite this setback, he was granted Icelandic citizenship, allowing him to live in Iceland until his death. Fischer’s contributions to chess were immense, but his personal life was marred by controversies and eccentricities. His story is a reminder of the complexities that can arise when brilliance and personal struggles intersect.