The publication date of today's article is July 14, which is the French national holiday, most popularly known here in the US as Bastille Day. The French certainly know how to throw a party, and music, dancing, liberally quaffed libations, parades, and much more take place throughout the country starting the evening of July 13 and continuing all through the next day. Capping it all off, of course, are spectacular displays of feu d'artifice--- fireworks.
We wanted to publish a French problem to celebrate the occasion, but high-level checkers as played in France is almost exclusively the international game, played on a 10x10 board with rules that differ in substantial ways from the Anglo-American game about which we write here. So instead, we're offering our own feu d'artifice display, featuring spectacular fireworks on the checker board. Here's the position, as composed by problemist T. Duncan.
With a setup such as this, you just know something extraordinary is about to happen. Can you work it out?
There's no need to explode, of course; clicking on Read More will rocket you to the crowd-pleasing solution.
15-10 25-30 18-14 9-25 10-14 30-26 11-15 4-18 14-21 White Wins.
Certainly, this one is worthy of a Bastille Day libation.