To the Editors:

The violent and illegal takeover of Excelsior, the foremost Mexican daily, by a small group of conservative employees (the paper is a cooperative), with the help and funding of the Mexican government, should be a matter of concern to all those committed to the cause of freedom of the press.

It is not only Mexico, though, that loses its only truly independent paper, but the whole of the Spanish-speaking world also loses its most respected and influential literary publication, Plural, published monthly by Excelsior and edited by Octavio Paz. Mr. Paz has already resigned in protest.

According to correspondents of both The New York Times and The Washington Post, President Luis Echeverría played a key role in those events not only for political reasons but also because of his personal stake in a new, expanding journalistic empire. Considering that President Echeverría is considered to be a candidate for Secretary General of the United Nations, this affair is only more regrettable. We urge readers to express their concern by writing to President Echeverría in Mexico City.

Hugo Estenssoro

Woody Allen

Noam Chomsky

Elizabeth Hardwick

John Kenneth Galbraith

Carey McWilliams

Arthur Miller

Philip Roth

Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.

I.F. Stone

Gore Vidal

This Issue

August 5, 1976