A Letter From The Publisher, Jan. 22, 1979

Moscow Bureau Chief Bruce Nelan is accustomed to covering diplomatic affairs, but in recent weeks he played diplomat as well as painstakingly negotiating the final details of a meeting with Soviet Party Chief Leonid Brezhnev. Nelan was successful, and last Tuesday he and a team of TIME journalists joined Brezhnev in his Kremlin office to conduct the extraordinary discussion that is part of this week's cover story. Never before had the party chief held a private interview with members of an American news organization.

A graduate of Columbia University's Russian Institute and a former State Department correspondent for TIME, Nelan is an...

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