Fair play Mr. O'Reilly

In issue 127 of Village, it was reported that Sir Anthony O'Reilly has threatened legal action against its editor.


 As a Knight of the British Empire, but probably more importantly, as a former rugby player, Mr O'Reilly should be aware of the term, ‘fair play'. The term's meaning does vary, rather like Mr O'Reilly's allegiance, who has obviously nailed his colours firmly to two very different fences. If one stays with the standard British definition of ‘fair play', where the meaning is that one should not respond to an act with a disproportionate response, then I feel Mr. O'Reilly is not in line with this definition. Nobody is above a little criticism, least of all you Tony. If Mr. O'Reilly feels he has been treated harshly, then there is no better place to find redress than to respond to it here in Village's letter page. This is much more measured and satisfying route than to threaten and bluster.

Also, in the same issue, Mr. O'Reilly is quoted as saying, ‘absolutely not, nor do I interfere in the editorial process in any IN & M newspaper'. It is entirely up to the reader to take him at his word on this or not. However the question I would like answered is, with the chief executive of IN & M having a knighthood, do the Irish editors of its publications feel compromised when stories regarding any part of the British establishment come to light, knowing that their boss has received an honour from that very establishment? The Irish Independent, for instance, is Ireland's most well read paper and has in the past represented a loud and clear voice for the Irish people but is this now conflicting with Mr. O'Reilly's KBE?

I read only today in one of O'Reilly's publications that rejoining the Commonwealth for Ireland may not be such a bad idea and elsewhere I read that one of its columnists has as his hero Lord Nelson. Is this only the tip of the iceberg?

If Ireland's ‘most powerful person' cannot answer his critics directly in the Village pages which of his numerous media outlets will he use?