Sir: The author of the editorial "Mr Straw must judge what harm the spies have done" (Review, 13 September) has a vague understanding what the West and the East were like during the early years of the Cold War.
Indeed there was a constant stream of information from the open and liberal West to the totalitarian Soviet Union. But there was practically no stream of information at all from the closed communist society, which was thoroughly controlled by the secret police.
Nuclear spies in the USA and Britain thus only strengthened the tyranny in the East, prolonged the enslavement of the East European nations and put the lives of the American and British people under the threat of a nuclear holocaust.
The writer is a former KGB double- agent