The world championship chess match is up and going now. It is between Veselin Topalov (a Bulgarian, currently rated 2813, the highest rated active player), and Vladimir Kramnik (a Russian, and current classical champion, with a rating of 2743). While the ratings favor Topalov, the experience favors Kramnik. Topalov has never done a marathon match such as a World Championship match, whereas Kramnik has done more than one. Kramnik took the championship from Kasparov, by the way, and has had a rating in the past of 2811. Therefore, I favor Kramnik to win the match, despite his recent illness. You can watch the games in real time here
The politics are interesting as well: about ten years ago, the chess world split because of Kasparov. Since then, there has been two champions, classical world and world. Kasparov wanted the championship to be determined not by a marathon match, but by a tournament. He wanted the professionalization of chess, whereas some still believed in the match system. The FIDE President has proposed a re-unification match between the two champions.