Incendiary claims by Prince Harry of ‘a war against Meghan’ sparked a furious backlash last night.
In a trailer for their new documentary, the duke alleged the couple had suffered from leaks and planted stories that backed up the Royal Family ‘hierarchy’.
Allies told the six-hour series on Netflix there was ‘a war against Meghan to suit other people’s agendas’, with one claiming ‘it’s about hatred, it’s about race’.
In clips for the show, Harry, 38, took aim at royal aides, smirking as he commented: ‘It’s a dirty game.’
But royal sources insisted it was ‘absolutely wrong’ to suggest Harry and Meghan had been briefed against and ‘unprecedented steps’ had been taken to support them.
During the teaser, a friend is heard claiming that the couple’s experience has been ‘about hatred, about race’ as a strikingly intimate and previously unseen clip flashes up of an exasperated Harry, 38, holding a hand to his face as Meghan passes behind him while heavily pregnant with their daughter, Lili
Incendiary claims by Prince Harry of ‘a war against Meghan’ sparked a furious backlash last night. Meghan is seen wiping her eyes as a worried Harry watches on. A similar scene also appeared in the first teaser
Today’s trailer included this image of Meghan and Harry shortly before their lawyer referred to a ‘war against Meghan’ involving the media. Royal correspondent Robert Jobson today claimed it was taken by a photographer who had been given permission to stand there
Echoing the point, ITV royal editor Chris Ship added: ‘Here Robert Jobson makes a valid point. The filming of Archie at Archbishop Tutu’s residence was highly controlled’
In a subsequent tweet showing a photo of Harry and Meghan alongside Archbishop Tutu with their baby Archie, Mr Jobson refuted claims of intrusion
There is hope among the family that the ‘Sussex squall’ will blow itself out by the time the series ends and Harry’s upcoming memoir is published in January
Prince Harry describes life in the Royal Family as a ‘dirty game’ in his new Netflix trailer
Meghan is seen looking worried as the Sussexes’ lawyer, Jenny Afia, tells the camera: ‘There was a war against Meghan to support other people’s agendas’
The teaser opens with a scene of Harry and Meghan in a car, seemingly in America, as the duke says: ‘It’s really hard to look back on it now and go ”what on earth happened?”
As videos play of the couple announcing their engagement and their wedding in 2018, a news clip voiceover by Piers Morgan says: ‘She’s becoming a royal rock star’
Finally, Harry appears in a selfie video as he says, ‘No one knows the full truth – we know the full truth’ and the trailer ends
One insider told The Daily Telegraph that Royal staff were instead ‘bending over backwards to work with them.
They added that it was ‘non-stop on their behalf’ when it came to defending them against negative stories – which began when rumours emerged of the couple’s behaviour towards staff.
Another said the narrative comparing Meghan to Kate was ‘fabricated’ with no difference between how they were treated by the press.
The new trailer gave the clearest signal yet that the California-based pair will reopen old wounds as they seek to justify why they quit as working royals and left Britain.
It contained footage of Princess Diana, Meghan and the new Princess of Wales all surrounded by photographers, as Harry spoke of ‘the pain and suffering of women marrying into this institution’.
Strip them of their titles, say 98% of you
Just two per cent of the public think Harry and Meghan should keep their titles, a Mail+ poll has found.
A staggering 98 per cent believe the couple should lose their titles as Duke and Duchess of Sussex, which were bestowed upon them by the late Queen in 2018.
Last night more than 42,000 readers had voted in the poll, but royal experts have suggested that scrapping the couple’s titles could prove a constitutional problem, because Harry is a prince by birth.
He appeared to reference the death of his mother as he added: ‘I was terrified. I didn’t want history to repeat itself.’
But the accuracy of the Netflix series was immediately called into question as it emerged that footage which supposedly showed media harassment of the couple was actually filmed under vastly different circumstances.
It includes a photograph showing Harry and Meghan walking away with their baby son Archie while a cameraman appeared to loom over them from a hidden vantage point.
Journalist Robert Jobson said it was taken when the couple met Archbishop Desmond Tutu in Cape Town, and that Harry and Meghan had agreed where three accredited photographers and journalists could stand.
He said it was a ‘complete travesty’ to use the photograph as an example of intrusion.
Mr Jobson tweeted: ‘This photograph used by @Netflix and Harry and Meghan to suggest intrusion by the press is a complete travesty.
‘It was taken from a accredited pool at Archbishop Tutu’s residence in Cape Town. Only 3 people were in the accredited position. H & M agreed the position. I was there.’
Mr Jobson later said: ‘They say the camera never lies, but it really depends where the image is used and in what context.’
The photograph they’ve used is of a camera lens, overlooking them carrying Archie. That photograph was taken from an accredited pool position and allowed by the Palace.
‘To suggest the newspapers are encroaching on the child is simply a distortion of the truth because nobody else was allowed into that compound. Therefore, you have to question the veracity of their truth in their documentary.’
Echoing the point, ITV royal editor Chris Ship added: ‘Here Robert Jobson makes a valid point. The filming of Archie at Archbishop Tutu’s residence was highly controlled.
‘And the ITN Productions camera filming the Sussexes’ Africa documentary was there with their permission. It was not a media scrum. They spoke to Tom Bradby inside.’
NETFLIX: Another photograph that was used in the first Harry and Meghan’s Netflix trailer released earlier this week
REALITY: But rather than showing photographers fighting for space to snap Harry and Meghan, the image is actually from a Harry Pottery premiere
It cuts to Meghan saying ‘and then’ before snapping her fingers with Harry adding: ‘Everything changed’
The trailer shows the couple sitting in the back of a car while Meghan’s voiceover says: ‘I realised, ‘they’re never gonna protect you.”
The second trailer for the couple’s Netflix series features an undated clip of Princess Diana facing the world’s press at a royal engagement
A photo of Diana being followed by photographers that featured in the second trailer – released at around midday
In a subsequent tweet showing a photo of Harry and Meghan alongside Archbishop Tutu with their baby Archie, Mr Jobson said: ‘This shot by me from the same accredited pool position on my iPhone was taken at Archbishop Tutu’s Cape Town residence.
‘There was no intrusion. I was part of a 3 person UK palace pool. Nobody else was allowed in and we shared the words and photos with the UK Media.’
Ingrid Seward, editor in-chief of Majesty magazine, also said: ‘The inaccurate photographs undermine the validity of what Harry and Meghan are trying to say. It makes them the object of ridicule.
‘If you are going to criticise the monarchy you have to make sure everything you say or do is absolutely correct.’
Footage of cameramen included in the trailer was actually filmed as former glamour model Katie Price arrived for a drink-driving court appearance, while a photograph showing banks of waiting photographers was taken at a Harry Potter premiere with no royal attendance.
In the trailer, footage shows photographers swarming around a car, as Meghan says: ‘I realised they [the Royal Household] are never gonna protect you.’
The trailer then cuts to an image of Meghan wiping her eyes, apparently in tears. But the car footage was filmed outside the home of Donald Trump’s former lawyer Michael Cohen, as he left to start a prison sentence in 2019.
Journalist and pundit Piers Morgan, whose voice from a news report was used in the trailer, said: ‘These two wouldn’t know the truth if it slapped them round their latte-encrusted tiaras.’
Lawyer friend wades in
Solicitor Jenny Afia is seen in the Netflix documentary trailer released yesterday saying: ‘There was a war against Meghan to suit other people’s agendas.’
A partner at London firm Schillings and a leading privacy and reputation lawyer, she has played a high-profile role alongside Harry and Meghan.
She featured in the BBC2 documentary The Princes and the Press last year in which she defended Meghan against accusations of bullying, denying the duchess had ever ‘improperly’ used her ‘power’. Speaking with Meghan’s permission, she insisted there were ‘massive, massive inaccuracies’ in claims that she had targeted and forced out several members of staff.
The claims, which were first reported by The Times earlier last year and vehemently denied by Meghan, became the subject of an internal Buckingham Palace inquiry.
A spokesman for the Sussexes condemned the claims of bullying as a ‘calculated smear campaign’ when they first emerged.
Jenny Afia, a lawyer who has represented the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, appears in the trailer
The former Good Morning Britain host branded Harry ‘a deluded spoiled manipulated brat’ who was ‘waging a relentless vicious public war against his own family’.
The couple’s claims sparked incredulity amongst royal insiders, some of whom were keen to make clear they are only speaking out because of the nature of the allegations from the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. One said: ‘The truth is that the Palace took unprecedented steps to support the couple. They were given their own dedicated household, office, press office, home and staff.
‘That is unheard of for a member of the Royal Family in their position [not a direct heir to the throne]. The Queen even sent her most trusted personal staff to support Meghan, not that she wanted any of their advice. Both the duke and duchess always thought they knew best.’
The source pointed out that not only were the Queen’s ladies-in-waiting asked to personally advise Meghan, but Harry’s grandmother persuaded her deputy private secretary, Sam Cohen, to stay on for six months to guide the couple.
Mrs Cohen remained with them for more than a year, even though, she later told friends, the experience was one of the worst of her career due to the couple’s allegedly unreasonable behaviour.
Another source adds: ‘Yes, this was a very new situation for the Royal Household but they were excited about Harry and Meghan’s potential and what they could achieve as a couple for the monarchy and the country.
‘They were keen to put in the framework for them to succeed. It’s why Her late Majesty handed them plum jobs within the Commonwealth. Could the Palace have done more? Very possibly. Can it be quite slow and unwieldy sometimes? Definitely.
‘Certainly too slow for the likes of Harry and Meghan, who were very impatient. The Palace’s starting point always is “but what is our precedent?” And of course there was none here. But it is absolutely wrong to suggest that they were unsupported or, worse, that people were briefing against them.
‘It would actually be laughable, if it wasn’t so serious. The Harry and Meghan show was a very different beast from the one they [the Palace] were used to. But they tried, they really did.’
One royal source added that far from leaking or placing negative stories about the couple in the media, Buckingham Palace and Kensington Palace actively tried to quash rumours that all was not well behind closed doors.
On the issue of the ‘family hierarchy’, a well-placed insider said: ‘Is there a hierarchy in the family? Of course there is. It’s like any other company or public institution. There’s a CEO, chief executives, department heads … That’s how big organisations work. They would be ungovernable otherwise. There’s a structure and it’s there for a reason.
A photo of the Royal Family at the Trooping the Colour in 2019 is shown – including William, Catherine, Charles and Camilla – while Harry narrates: ‘There’s a hierarchy of the family, you know, there’s leaking, but there’s also planting of stories. It’s a dirty game’
A news presenter describes ‘the sounds of hearts breaking around the world’, as the couple announced their engagement
Another scene plays of the Sussexes on a royal walkabout as a member of the public shouts ‘Meghan, we love you!’
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle shared a number of ultra-personal unseen images in the first trailer for their Netflix documentary
In one of the hugely personal images which was featured in the teaser, Meghan can be seen cradling her baby bump
It also shows them before their royal wedding during a trip they took to Botswana in 2017
A slick trailer for the six-part series was released last week threatening to reveal further details of family difficulties. Pictured: a photo from the trailer
‘But they [the Sussexes] could not and would not accept that. They wanted to be the stars and, some may argue, had no interest whatsoever in working for the greater good. At the end of the day, everyone pulls together for the sake of the monarch. They didn’t want to do that.’
The Netflix trailer recorded 2.4million views within six hours of going on Twitter. The first three episodes will be available on Thursday and the rest from December 15.
Buckingham Palace declined to comment last night. Sources said the Royal Family would focus on the ‘job in hand’.
Defender’s jibe at Wills and Kate
The Harry and Meghan champion who claimed ‘it’s about hatred, it’s about race’ previously aimed a cruel comment at William and Kate.
US-based Christopher Bouzy, 47, who once said he was a ‘serial entrepreneur’, is seen briefly in the Netflix trailer.
A firm defender of the Sussexes, his company Bot Sentinel released a report last year claiming that the couple were the target of a coordinated hate campaign on Twitter. After analysing 114,000 tweets, it said it had identified 83 accounts behind 70 per cent of the more virulently anti-Sussex tweets, the Washington Post reported.
Twitter reportedly found no evidence of widespread coordination.
Mr Bouzy made a questionable reference on Twitter to the Prince and Princess of Wales’s appearance, saying he thought the pair, both 40, were ageing in ‘banana years’ – thought to mean that they were ageing rapidly. After Mail Online first reported his tweet about Kate and William yesterday, Mr Bouzy tweeted that it ‘has nothing to do with groups of Caucasian women participating in a 4+ year coordinated hate campaign against Meghan Markle, nor does it affect our research’.
In another Twitter post yesterday, he said: ‘Racism and hatred can often accelerate the ageing process.’
A one-minute long clip released by Netflix features Christopher Bouzy, the founder of US tech company Bot Sentinel, who claimed: ‘It’s about hatred. It’s about race’
SARAH VINE: Harry and Meghan are gaslighting the entire nation while lining their pockets with misery
No one knows the full truth; we know the full truth.’ With those portentous words Prince Harry ends the second trailer for his Netflix documentary, part one of which is released in full on Thursday.
Or, to put it another way, the gloves are well and truly off.
Not that anyone really believed otherwise, given the Sussexes’ recent behaviour. But there was always a faint hope they might retain some decorum; that certain areas might remain off-limits even for them.
Not so. And that sounds like a threat, as clear as it is sinister.
No one knows the full truth; we know the full truth.’ With those portentous words Prince Harry ends the second trailer for his Netflix documentary, part one of which is released in full on Thursday
Two things stand out. First, the weaponisation of Princess Diana and her own experience as a royal consort in order to elevate Meghan. It’s hardly surprising: Harry has mentioned his wife before in the context of his mother, but this goes one step further.
By placing footage of the late Princess Diana alongside images of Meghan in various stages of distress, the message is clear: the two are virtually one and the same.
This is clever. Not only does it enlist (and enrage) the armies of Princess Diana fans who still, to this day, believe she was assassinated by the Royal Family and who will, no doubt, sally forth on social media to spread the gospel; it also allows Meghan to inherit Diana’s iconic status. Which is presumably rather useful when pitching victim narratives to Netflix.
But when you think about it, it’s a really cheap shot, not only because it’s effectively monetising Diana’s life (and death); but also because, let’s not forget, Harry isn’t Diana’s only son. One can only imagine how Prince William must feel about Harry appropriating their late mother in this way.
Two things stand out. First, the weaponisation of Princess Diana and her own experience as a royal consort in order to elevate Meghan. It’s hardly surprising: Harry has mentioned his wife before in the context of his mother, but this goes one step further
Second, race. ‘It’s about race,’ says one of the talking heads in this trailer. Harry and Meghan left because the Royal Family — and, it would seem from this, most of the British media — are racist. Really? But I thought you just told us it was all about history repeating itself? Diana wasn’t mixed race, was she? So how can it be racist? Make up your minds, guys.
The lack of self-awareness is staggering. At one point Harry intones, in his now familiar Voice of Doom, about ‘the pain and suffering of women marrying into this institution, this feeding frenzy’.
I’m sorry? Come again? What about your constant attacks on the institution into which another woman — the Princess of Wales — married?
Or does Kate not count because she doesn’t spend all her time playing the victim, weeping and wailing about how awful her life is — but just gets on with it instead of finding fault at every turn?
Does she not count because, unlike Meghan, she has managed to make a success of being a royal consort?
The Netflix trailer starts with Harry telling us: ‘It’s really hard to look back on it and go, “What on earth really happened?”’
No, Harry, it’s not. It’s very easy. So let me spell it out for you. You and Meghan had it all: a very comfortable life complete with all the advantages of your station, the adoration of the British public, a positive platform from which to pursue your passions.
The lack of self-awareness is staggering. At one point Harry intones, in his now familiar Voice of Doom, about ‘the pain and suffering of women marrying into this institution, this feeding frenzy’
Meghan was welcomed with open arms and total sincerity; you had a £30 million wedding with cheering crowds from Windsor to Wolverhampton; Prince Charles walked Meghan down the aisle; you were part of the ‘Fab Four’, the future of the Royal Family.
The tide turned only because of your behaviour: the diva demands; the jealousy towards other royals; that baby shower; those private jets; the ingratitude; the hypocrisy; the ungracious rows over tiaras and Frogmore Cottage.
What happened, Harry, was that people started to question some of your and Meghan’s choices, and you didn’t like that.
And instead of wondering whether people might have a point when they said they didn’t much like being lectured about climate change by someone who seemed to use private air travel as an Uber; instead of checking your and your wife’s privilege (to use a phrase beloved of your new American friends), you threw a massive hissy fit and now make allegations of racism.
And here you are, gaslighting the entire nation while lining your pockets with your so-called misery. And I’m sorry, but it won’t wash. In my view it’s nothing to do with hate, and it’s nothing to do with race.
Your paymasters at Netflix may fall for this nonsense but the British public sees straight through you. That, I’m afraid, is the ‘full truth’.
Prince Harry blasts ‘pain and suffering of women marrying into this institution’ – over footage of Kate facing a ‘feeding frenzy’ of photographers
By Lydia Hawken for MailOnline
Prince Harry has blasted the ‘pain and suffering of women marrying into the institution’ in the latest trailer for his new Netflix series.
This afternoon, the streaming platform has released a second trailer for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s new series and confirmed the first episodes of the television special will debut on Thursday.
In a clip from the series, the father-of-two discusses how life within the firm can be a ‘dirty game’.
As Prince Harry muses on his experience as a senior working royal, the trailer jumps to an undated clip of Princess Diana at a royal engagement where she faces the world’s press.
The new Netlix trailer used video footage of the Princess of Wales (pictured in 2007) outside her home in Chelsea before marrying into the Royal Family
As the video flashes up on screen, Harry comments: ‘The pain and suffering of women marrying into this institution, this feeding frenzy. No one knows the full truth. We know the full truth.’
Producers then used a split-second clip of the Princess of Wales outside her flat in Chelsea in 2007.
The future royal – who was working as an accessories buyer at fashion brand Jigsaw at the time – is seen walking along the street outside her home while being surrounded by photographers.
The then 25-year-old had been in a relationship with Prince William for seven years at the time the video footage was taken.