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David R. Sands

David R. Sands

Raised in Northern Virginia, David R. Sands received an undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia and a master's degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. He worked as a reporter for several Washington-area business publications before joining The Washington Times.

At The Times, Mr. Sands has covered numerous beats, including international trade, banking, politics and Capitol Hill, and spent eight years on the foreign desk as senior diplomatic correspondent. He is currently the deputy editor for politics. In addition, he has reviewed books and written feature stories for the newspaper and authored The Times' weekly chess column since 1993. He is also senior writer for Washington GolfStyles, a monthly publication covering the Mid-Atlantic golf scene.


Articles by David R. Sands

Pal Benko lived a full life at the chessboard -- and away from it

The blessing/curse -- "May you live in interesting times" -- just may have been conceived with Pal Benko in mind. The storied Hungarian American grandmaster and problemist, who died last week at the age of 91, lived such a full life at and away from the chessboard that one column cannot begin to do justice to his ordeals and achievements. Published September 3, 2019

Korchnoi-Geller after 16...Nf3-d4.

Fighting chess at Korchnoi Memorial proves worthy of its namesake

At the recent Viktor Korchnoi Memorial in St. Petersburg, Russian GM Vadim Zvjaginsev tied for first with compatriot Maksim Chigaev and American GM Gata Kamsky, helped in part by a fine mating attack against Russian FM Yury Prokopchuk. Published August 27, 2019

U.S. President Donald Trump, right, and Russian President Vladimir Putin pose for a photo during a bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the G-20 summit in Osaka, Japan, Friday, June 28, 2019. (Mikhail Klimentyev, Sputnik, Kremlin Pool Photo via AP) **FILE**

Russia wary of Trump talk of rejoining G-7

President Trump is ready to welcome them back, but Russian officials reacted warily to talk of rejoining the Group of Seven club of leading industrial powers. Published August 21, 2019

Huntsberger-Helms after 26. Bc2xd1.

A chess columnist's tribute to chess columnists

The estimable Chess Journalists of America has just handed out its 2019 awards and our humble little effort here has once again been named the "best regular newspaper chess column" in the country. Published August 20, 2019

Mitkov-Paul after 29. Kg1-h2.

Illya Nyzhnyk shuts the door at U.S. Open with last-round chess win

The U.S. Open is looking pretty spry these days, considering it just turned 120. The nation's premier open chess tournament passed the latest milestone this month, providing a good bit of drama along the way. Ukrainian-born GM Illya Nyzhnyk claimed solo first and a spot in next year's U.S. Closed Championship with a dominating 8-1 result in Orlando, Florida. Published August 13, 2019

U.S. Ambassador to Canada Kelly Knight Craft stands during her swearing in ceremony in the Indian Treaty Room in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building on the White House grounds in Washington. The Senate has confirmed Craft to become the next U.S. envoy to the United Nations. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

Senate confirms Kelly Craft as U.N. ambassador, replacing Nikki Haley

Despite a last-minute push by minority Democrats, the Senate on Wednesday approved President Trump's choice of Kelly Craft, a former ambassador to Canada and major donor to Republican causes, as the next U.S. ambassador to the United Nations. Published July 31, 2019

Short-Timman after 30...h7-h5.

In chess, the king is not always a royal pain

It is not, in fact, always good to be the king. In chess, the king is both indispensable and a giant pain in the neck, an entitled, one-square-at-a-time attention hog who needs constant protection and reinforcement. Still, there are some rare examples where the king gets to shine, when His Majesty takes the initiative and doesn't just sit there leading from behind. Published July 31, 2019

Yip-Wu after 26...Kh8.

Awonder Liang, Carissa Yip, Alex Shabalov shine in triple chess championships

Two weeks' worth of hard work at the Chess Club of St. Louis produced three new U.S. champions, with 16-year-old Wisconsin GM Awonder Liang recording a rare three-peat as U.S. junior champion, edging out New Jersey GM Nicolas Checa in a playoff after the two tied in the 10-player invitational at 7-2. Published July 23, 2019

Andriasian-Gabuzyan after 27...Ne5-c4.

Seniors sizzle among a tsunami of summer chess events

The so-called dog days for summer can leave a chess columnist dog tired. That's because the hot weather and vacation schedules annually combine for a tsunami of summer tournaments, from superelite events in Europe to national championships in Norway and Uzbekistan to a slew of strong Swiss tournaments across the U.S. Published July 16, 2019

Jin Liqun, inaugural president of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), smiles as reporters raise their hands to ask for questions during a press conference at a hotel in Beijing on Jan. 17, 2016. (Associated Press) **FILE**

China-led Asian investment bank holds annual meeting in heart of Europe

A Beijing-based infrastructure funding bank strongly backed by the Chinese government is holding its annual meeting Friday in Luxembourg, the first time the event has been held in Europe and a sign the bank may be looking beyond Asia for investment opportunities. Published July 12, 2019

Richter-Pirc after 30...axb5.

Opening a path to chess immortality

Winning a world championship is nice, but if you really want to enhance your brand in chess, invent an opening. Published July 2, 2019