The Source

IN HER review of my book Stalin in Power (Book World, Nov. 11), Jane E. Good of the U.S. Naval Academy writes that the book's one obvious weakness is that only three of nearly 150 titles in the bibliography have been published since 1982, and adds: "Tucker's claim that recent revelations did not necessitate any interpretive changes in his text would be more persuasive if he referenced glasnost sources."

Good has, unfortunately, overlooked the section of the book's bibliography which lists articles in Russian as sources. Out of a total of 97 source references here, no less than 38 are to Soviet articles in Russian published in the years 1986 to 1990, and all but two of them are from publications dated 1988 to 1990 inclusive.

There has not been much time for entire books to appear as yet under glasnost (which deal with the history of Stalin's time), hence I referenced many glasnost sources from newspapers and periodicals. ROBERT C. TUCKER Department of Politics Princeton University Princeton, N.J.

Jane E. Good responds: I wrote what I considered a very favorable review of Prof. Tucker's Stalin in Power. I perhaps should have made the minor criticism of Tucker's citations of glasnost-vintage books about the Stalin era more explicitly in comparison with the next book I reviewed in the article, Walter Laqueur's Stalin: The Glasnost Revelations, which cites 16 books about the Stalin era published in the Soviet Union during the years 1988 and 1989.


AS SOON as I read the identification for Forrest G. Wood in his review of Garry Wills's Under God: Religion and American Politics (Book World, Nov. 11) and the title of his book -- history professor and author of The Arrogance of Faith: Christianity and Race in America From the Colonial Era to the 20th Century -- I thought, "Uh oh!" I was not disappointed. What was very obvious from this "review" was Wood's bias against American Christianity, his disdain of the "myths" of Christianity and his gut-level dismissal of Fundamentalist Christianity. In other words, I learned a lot in this review about Forrest G. Wood. I did not learn a lot about the book he was supposed to review, Under God: Religion and American Politics. STEPHEN F. YELOVICH Accident, Md.


IN HIS review of Cuba: A Journey (Book World, Nov. 4), Tad Szulc perpetuates the myth that Jacobo Timerman was jailed in Argentina by the military regime "for denouncing in the columns of his newspaper massive violations of the human rights of the Argentines." Actually, Timerman was jailed because of the alleged involvement of his business partner, David Graiver, with the Montoneros, a '70s terrorist group. Also, it is nonsensical to say that the Cubans assumed that "Timerman would automatically become an apologist for the revolution." In fact, he was such an apologist for many years, and in the '60s and '70s his newspaper, La Opinion, was full of praise for Castro. The Cubans' mistake was that they did not realize that Timerman, whatever his convictions (if any), would not go on betting on a loser, and that, in view of the "winds of change" currently blowing, he had finally decided to denounce the bloody dictatorship that he had earlier supported. LUIS C. ARIBE McLean

Tad Szulc responds: I do not know Luis C. Aribe. I am unfamiliar with his qualifications for passing judgment on what Jacobo Timerman did to warrant his imprisonment by the Argentine military. As far as myths are concerned, it is Aribe who provides the latest in resurrecting the Graiver affair, which is well known to all experts on Argentina. Thus Timerman was cleared of all charges connected with these allegations by the Supreme Court of Argentina after restoration of democratic government; I assume Aribe knows the military are no longer in power -- since 1983. Concerning Timerman's book on Cuba, which was the subject of my review, I am not prepared to polemicize as to what the Cubans had in mind in inviting him. Knowing Cuba and its regime, however, I do accept Timerman's conclusions on this point; I have no idea what Aribe knows about Cuba. Finally, as I point out in the review, Timerman was the first to say he had been pro-Castro in the post-revolutionary period; like many others, he presumably changed his mind after Castro distorted his own revolution.


PAUL BREINES'S statement (Book World, Nov. 18) that the letters protesting the choice of Edward Said as a critic for his Tough Jews were "not entirely spontaneous expressions" is not only outrageous but also demeans each and every individual who wrote to The Washington Post on this subject. As one of the original letter writers, I assure Breines that I was not a participant in any conspiracy to protest the obvious bias of Edward Said in his review. NELSON MARANS Silver Spring


FOR A biography of William A. Cunnea, attorney, Irish immigrant, associate of Clarence Darrow and Carl Sandburg, active in socialist causes from 1900-1930, including the defense of Eugene Debs at his sedition trial, I would appreciate hearing from anyone who knew him or knows of materials, particularly letters, making reference to him. LISA SMALL No. 806 2400 South Glebe Rd. Arlington, Va. 22206-2569

FOR A genealogical/historical work on the family of Chief Justice John Marshall (1755-1835), I would appreciate communicating with, or receiving any information about, his descendants, living or dead. MARSHALL L. SMITH 30 Ritchfield Ct. Rockville, Md. 20850-3028