11 OCTOBER 1975, Page 4

Portugal and democracy

Sir: Mr Cotton (Letters, September 27) should really try to answer my criticisms of Brigadier Calvert's call to arms before he sets off for Portugal to lay down his life for the House of Braganza. However many arms caches his Catholic Monarchists may have (and most of them seem to be leftist houses), they are unlikely to be able to defeat even the demoralised Portuguese army: However many Lusitanians are politically reliable, Mr Cotton must remember that they will just form a classic 'silent majority' and, like 'silent majorities' all over the world, will prove helpless in the face of the combined (or even opposed) forces of the "Liberal" consensus of Scares and the Marxism of Gonsalves.

These days no cause is ever worth fighting for, especially a lost cause like Poetugal, and very few are worth fighting against. It is a sad fact that not since the defeat of Napoleon has armed conflict had an agreeable outcome.

It would be a great pity if Mr Cotton threw away his life: Oxford without him would never be the same.

C. N. Jordan 41 Scotlon Street, Wye, Kent