Prince Harry said Sunday night on British television that he “fled” his “homecountry” with wife Meghan Markle and son Archie “fearing for our lives,” atthe time of their so-called “Megxit.”
“It never needed to get to this point,” Harry said. “I’ve had conversations,I’ve written letters, I’ve written emails, and everything is just, no, you,this is not what’s happening. You, you are, you are imagining it. And that’sreally, that’s really hard to take. And if it had stopped, by the point that Ifled my home country with my wife and my son fearing for our lives, then maybethis would’ve turned out differently. It’s tough.”
Prince William ‘Burning,’ King Charles ‘Heartbroken’ On Prince Harry’s Memoir
However, Harry emphasized he is “100 per cent” sure there can bereconciliation between he and Meghan and the royal family—despite also callingthe royal family “abusers.”
Asked if he expected to reconcile having “taken a flamethrower” to rebuildingfamily bridges, Harry said: “Well they’ve shown absolutely no willingness toreconcile up until this point. And I’m not sure how honesty is burningbridges. You know, silence only allows the abuser to abuse. Right? So I don’tknow how staying silent is ever gonna make things better. That’s sincerelywhat I believe.” Harry said he felt “very at peace” and had “never beenhappier.”
The revelations tumbled forth as Harry gave the first televised interview forhis bombshell memoir, Save , to be released tomorrow. The Spanishtranslation of the book was accidentally released six days early in Spain lastweek, and its contents have been widely reported.
Harry sat down for the interview with British channel ITV anchor Tom Bradbywho said at the outset of the interview that he had known Harry for 20 yearsthrough “good times and bad.” Later Sunday evening, his interview withAnderson Cooper on CBS’ 60 Minutes was set to be broadcast.
Harry discussed a recent article by Sun columnist Jeremy Clarkson in whichClarkson said he wanted Meghan to be paraded through the streets naked andpelted with excrement. His words caused near-universal condemnation.
Harry said: “What he said was horrific and is hurtful and cruel towards mywife, but it also encourages other people around the UK and around the world,men particularly, to go and think that it’s acceptable to treat women thatway. To use my stepmother’s words recently as well, there is a global pandemicof violence against women.”
The British press was “an antagonist” in the relationship he had with the restof his family, Harry said. The tabloids “want to create as much conflict aspossible.”
“The saddest part of that is certain members of my family and the people thatwork for them are complicit in that conflict.”
The interview featured extracts from the book read by Harry, including theopening sequence, in which Harry described being told by his father that hismother had died in a car crash.
Harry said he only cried “once at the burial” and described his bemusement atgreeting the public who had “wet hands” from wiping tears away while he andWilliam were “unable to show any emotion.” Harry also said William didn’t wantto be close to him at Eton.
In terms of the much-discussed incident when William pushed him over, he toldBradby: “He wanted me to—to hit him back, but I chose not to. But again, somuch of the relationship between me and William and the way it played out wasbecause of the narrative, or the—the distorted narrative that was being pushedthrough the British press. And some people within his office that were feedinghim utter nonsense.”
Or Charles, Harry read from Save : “He’d always given an air of not beingquite ready for parenthood: the responsibilities, the patience, the time. Evenhey, though a proud man, would have admitted as much. But single parenthood?Dad was never made for that. To be fair, he tried.”
Speaking of his father’s duty as a widowed father, he said, “I never want tobe in that position. That is part of the reason we are here now.”
Harry insisted what he was writing in the memoir was not to hurt Charles andPrince William. “I love my father. I love my brother. I love my family. Ialways do. Nothing of what I’ve done in this book or otherwise has ever beento harm them or hurt them.”
“There’s no part of any of the things that I’ve said are scathing towards anymember of my family, especially not my stepmother,” Harry said. “There arethings that have happened that have been incredibly hurtful . . . some in thepast, some current.”
Bradby tackled Harry on his attacks on his brother, saying, “But the portraitof your brother is harmful to him, I mean people may choose not to accept itor whatever, but it is harmful to him… I think he would say he found youemotional, defensive, he couldn’t get through to you, he found itextraordinarily frustrating, …”Harry shot back, “It’s quite a list—list ofthings, assumptions you’re making.” Bradby replied: “I’m just saying I thinkthat would be the counter narrative on the other side, that the truth is morenuanced and all the rest of it. Right? That would be the defence.”
Harry replied: “Well the truth, supposedly at the moment, has been there’sonly one side to this story. Right? But there’s two sides to every story. Andyou know, I have put in a lot of work and effort in to resolving my own traumafrom many, many years ago, and I will continue to work on that, and—and Ithink other people within my family could do with that support as well.Because certainly from my perspective, um, you know, I’ve—I’ve learned a hellof a lot. Again in the book I talk about unconscious bias, and being called aracist by the British press.”
Harry defended his decision to leave the royal family, saying: “We werededicated to a life of service, as is proven by everything that we’re doingnow with the work that we do. And the proposal was very much on the table,publicly, which is we can’t cope in this situation and we’re gonna put ourmental health first, we’ve asked for help and support.
“At that time I didn’t fully understand how much—or how complicit the familywere in that pain and suffering that was happening to my wife, and the onegroup of people that could’ve helped or stopped this from happening were thevery people that were—that were encouraging it to happen. And I sit here nowin front of you asking for a family. Not an institution. I want a family. AndI understand how that might be hard for them to be able to separate the two,but to me everything that I’ve witnessed and experienced over the years, therehas to be a separation.”
When he told William and Kate about his relationship with Meghan, Harry saidthere was “a lot of stereotyping that was happening, that I was guilty of aswell, at the beginning,” around her being an American actress. “Some of thethings that my brother and sister-in-law—some of the way that they were actingor behaving definitely felt to me as though unfortunately that stereotypingwas causing a bit of a barrier to them really sort of, you know, introducingor welcoming her in.”
Harry told the story, reported in the Sunday newspapers, of William orderinghim to shave his beard off for his wedding to Meghan.
Harry denied that he called his family racist in his famous interview withOprah Winfrey.
Bradby said, “In the Oprah interview you accused members of your family ofracism…” and Harry replied, “No I didn’t. the British press said that….Did –did Meghan ever mention that they’re racist?”
Bradby clarified the question, saying, “She said there were troubling commentsabout Archie’s skin color.”Harry replied: “There was – there was concern abouthis skin color.”
Bradby said: “Right. Wouldn’t you describe that as essentially racist?”Harrythen said: “I wouldn’t, not having lived within that family.”Bradby replied:“Right. But you don’t…”
Harry said: “So again going – going back to the difference between what myunderstanding is because of my own experience, the difference between racismand unconscious bias, the two things are different. But once it’s beenacknowledged, or pointed out to you as an individual, or as an institution,that you have unconscious bias, you therefore have an opportunity to learn andgrow from that in order so that you are part of the solution rather than partor the problem. Otherwise unconscious bias then moves into the category ofracism.”
Bradby tried again, asking: “But I suppose I mean isn’t there a danger thatpeople are gonna think bad—you know, you haven’t identified which members ofthe family …”
Harry responded: “And I will never talk—and I will never talk about that. Imean what happened to Ngozi Fulani is a very good example of the environmentwithin the institution, and why after our Oprah interview, they said that theywere gonna bring in a diversity tsar. That hasn’t happened. Everything theysaid was gonna happen hasn’t happened. I’ve always been open to wanting tohelp them understand their part in it, and especially when you are themonarchy, at the—you have a responsibility and quite rightly people hold youto a higher standard than others.
“Definitely the media should. Right? So, the way that I’ve learned it throughmy own experience and for what I’ve seen and what I’ve heard, yes, you’reright the key word is concern, which was troubling. But you speak to any othercouple, mixed race couple around the world, and you will probably find thatthe white side of the family have either openly discussed it, or secretlydiscussed, you know, ‘What are the kids gonna look like?’ And that is part ofa, you know, bigger conversation that needs to be had.”
Talking to Bradby about why he had once called a fellow soldier a racistepithet, Harry talked of “mistakes” he made in his 20s. “They were neverintentional to harm anybody, but I recognize from that a level of unconsciousbias within me that probably came from a combination of my upbringing, thingsI was exposed to and things that I saw in the media. And I made a choice toright that wrong.”
Harry “knew that I wasn’t a racist” and describes how that had been “ahorrible place.”
“But there was a level of unconscious bias that existed within me that neededto be confronted,” Harry said.
Asked why he had written the memoir, he said he had endured having “38 yearsof having my story told by so many other different people with intentionalspin and distortion,” and he wanted to now “own” his story.
He said that he did “everything” he could “privately to get through to myfamily” but said he was consistently told, “You’re imagining it.”
At the end of the interview Harry said that his departure from the royalfamily was “embarrassing for some people,” saying, “I’m very at peace. I am ina better place than I’ve ever been, and I think that probably angers somepeople, infuriates others, because just by the nature of me leaving, I’m surethey, they, some people always thought that Meghan would leave , right, but Idon’t think they ever thought that I would leave as well, but, just by leavingthat has, it’s, it’s embarrassing for some people. It wasn’t something that Iwould have necessarily chosen at the time, but you know, I own my story, and Iown the results. But, I’ve got two beautiful kids and an amazing wife, likethe happiness in my family now I have never felt anywhere else before.”
He added: “It’s been hard, I’m not going to lie, it’s been really hard attimes, but I guess there’s also a lot of people who refuse to accept that Icould be happy out here, because of what I’ve left behind. But the reality isI’ve never been happier.”
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