LONDON: Allies of Britain’s royal family on Saturday pushed back against claims made by Prince Harry in his new memoir, which paints the monarchy as a cold, callous institution that failed to nurture or sustain him.
Buckingham Palace has not officially commented on the book. But British newspapers and websites were full of quotes from anonymous “royal insiders” refuting Harry’s accusations. One said his public attacks on the Royal Family had taken a ‘toll’ on the health of Queen Elizabeth II, who died in September.
Veteran journalist Jonathan Dimbleby, biographer and friend of King Charles III, said Harry’s revelations were of the type ‘you’d expect… from some sort of B-list celebrity’, and that the King would be pained and frustrated. .
“His concern … is to act as head of state for a nation that we all know is in quite a troubled state,” Dimbleby told the BBC. “I think he’ll think it’s embarrassing.”
Harry’s book ‘Spare’ is the latest in a series of very public statements from the Prince and his wife Meghan since leaving royal life and moving to California in 2020, citing what they considered such as the racist treatment of Meghan by the media, which is biracial, and a lack of support from the palace. It follows an interview with Oprah Winfrey and a six-part Netflix documentary released last month.
Harry is not the first British royal to leak family secrets – both of his parents took to the media when their marriage fell apart. Charles co-operated on Dimbleby’s 1994 book and accompanying TV documentary, which revealed the then-heir to the throne had an affair during his marriage to Princess Diana.
Diana gave her side of the story in a BBC interview the following year, saying “there were three of us in this marriage” in reference to Charles’ relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles.
But ‘Spare’ goes into much more detail about private conversations and personal grievances than any previous royal reveal.
In the ghost-written memoir, Harry discusses his grief at the death of his mother in 1997 and his long-standing resentment at the role of royal “reserve”, eclipsed by the “heir” – his older brother, the Prince William. It recounts arguments and a physical altercation with William, reveals how he lost his virginity (in a field) and describes using cocaine and cannabis.
He also says he killed 25 Taliban fighters while piloting an Apache helicopter in Afghanistan – a claim criticized by both Taliban and British military veterans.
“Spare” is due to be released worldwide on Tuesday. The Associated Press obtained a first copy in Spanish.
Harry said he expected counterattacks from the palace. He has long complained of “leaks” and “plantings” of stories to the media by members of the royal household.
In an interview due to air on ITV on Sunday – one of several he has recorded to promote the book – Harry says people who accuse him of invading his family’s privacy “don’t understand or don’t want to believe that my family informed the press.
“I don’t know how keeping quiet will make things better,” he said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *