12 AUGUST 1972, Page 15

Russian dissent

Sir: I think that a true broad generalisation can be derived from Tibor Szamuely's exemplarily lucid review of the liberalist-intellectual position in Russia, (July 22). It is that the ' freedom ' brought to Russia by the old liberalist movement is obviously considered too precious by the Russian rulers to be subjected to a new liberalist movement in its turn. But if one removes the terms 'old' and ' new ' it seems that the inevitable result of all liberalism is to produce spirally an even higher pitch of constriction. What might be called the Marxist, or Dialectical Doom. This is because secular communist liberalism unlike Christian liberalism (` the truth shall make you free ') has no transcendent goal (God) in which to locate its final raison d'être — such liberalism is itself an imprisonment really and can only, chameleon-like, crange its camouflage.

Thomas W. Gadd,

124 Hucknall Road, Nottingham