Freedom of Press Across the Border

In the Opinion page article "Mexico: Much Press, Little Real Freedom," March 8, the author asks, "What does freedom of the press mean in Mexico?" and then proceeds to malign all members of the broadcast and print media in Mexico.

The author's principal objection is that the Mexican press gives insufficient coverage to the left Democratic Revolutionary Party (PRD). How this equates with a lack of press freedom is puzzling. The heart of a free press is the ability to print or report as one chooses, so long as it is accurate.

The author says that the Mexican government "allows Televisa to maintain and expand its vertical and horizontal hold on practically the entire Mexican entertainment industry." While Televisa's four channels in Mexico City have the largest television audience, they have competition from four other channels, two of which are in the process of being privatized.

The author also says that Televisa pays no Mexican taxes. In 1991, Televisa had taxable income of $270,165 and paid income and asset taxes on $79,961. Like other Mexican corporations, Televisa pays income, asset, payroll, and value-added taxes. Lawrence W. Dam, Los Angeles, Vice President and General Counsel UNIVISA Angolan rebels

The article "Rebels Blamed as Angolan Talks Derail," March 2, illustrates the confusion surrounding events in that oil-rich nation. UNITA genuinely believes the September 1992 elections were fraudulent. UN documents and international observers also suggest fraud.

The US, Portugal, and Russia have little leverage with the rebel movement because they have not condemned the massacre of the UNITA peace delegation in Luanda in October 1992. UNITA refuses to travel to Ethiopia under UN and/or MPLA protection because the UNITA vice president and chief negotiator, as well as thousands of UNITA supporters, were killed under a previous UN cease-fire agreement violated by MPLA.

The Clinton administration, as a guarantor of the Bicesse Accords, is obliged to reestablish communication with the UNITA leadership. Blame for the debacle in Angola must be shared. W. Martin James, Arkadelphia, Ark.

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