WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM - MAY 19: Prince Harry arrives at his wedding to Ms. Meghan Markle with his best man Prince William, Duke of Cambridge at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle on May 19, 2018 in Windsor, England. (Photo by Jane Barlow - WPA Pool/Getty Images)
Jane Barlow – WPA Pool/Getty Images


Ex-Pat Prince Harry’s Memoir Oozes Unresolved Sibling Rivalry — He Blames William For Almost Everything

Ex-pat Prince Harry’s memoir, titled “Spare” in a likely jab at his father King Charles III, is set to be released on January 10 — but if the sneak peeks are any indication, the entire tome appears to be a compilation of unaired grievances and instances of unresolved sibling rivalry.

Harry left the U.K. and his royal duties behind shortly after the May 2019 birth of son Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor — the first of his two children with his wife, American actress-turned-Duchess-of-Sussex Meghan Markle (“Suits”). By mid-February of 2021, the palace had confirmed that Harry and Meghan would not be returning to their Royal roles.

“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have confirmed to Her Majesty The Queen that they will not be returning as working members of The Royal Family,” the February 19, 2021, statement from Buckingham Palace read.

Since then, the quasi-royals have attempted to carve out a life for themselves outside the palace walls — and so far, every outing has been another variation on the same theme: everyone at the Palace wanted them gone, with Prince William and Princess Kate chief among them.

From the now-infamous Oprah interview to their multi-episode Netflix special, Harry and Meghan have lobbed a series of accusations against the Royal Family in general — from bullying to racism and everything in between — and “Spare” appears to pick up where Netflix left off.

Harry blames William and Kate for his 2005 decision to wear a Nazi uniform to a costume party, saying that they had “howled with laughter upon seeing him in the get-up and encouraged him to go for it.

“I phoned Willy and Kate, asked what they thought. Nazi uniform, they said,” Harry says that he then brought the costume home to try it on before the “Native and Colonial” themed party. “They both howled. Worse than Willy’s leotard outfit! Way more ridiculous! Which, again, was the point.”

In 2017, when Harry and Meghan made their public debut at the Toronto Invictus Games, Markle received criticism for wearing ripped jeans. Harry alleges in “Spare” that her outfit had been approved by the palace – but then complains that someone should have issued a statement in her defense once the backlash began.

“A single declaration in defense of Meg would have been enough to make a tremendous difference,” he writes.

Harry also claims that Prince William warned him not to propose to Markle, saying things were moving “too fast” and saying they’d never be able to spend time together as a foursome because “she’s an American actress, after all.” He went on to say that William was the one who nixed plans for them to wed at Westminster Abbey — where William and Kate were married — and had been opposed to them using St. Paul’s as well.

The ex-royal writes about a number of disagreements with his brother — particularly where Markle is concerned — and says that one such incident nearly resulted in fisticuffs.

William, Harry writes, referred to Markle as “abrasive,” “difficult,” and “rude” — comments that Harry says were simply a reflection of the prevailing press narrative — and alleges that William punctuated his comments with a physical assault.

“It all happened so fast. So very fast. He grabbed me by the collar, ripping my necklace, and he knocked me to the floor. I landed on the dog’s bowl, which cracked under my back, the pieces cutting into me. I lay there for a moment, dazed, then got to my feet and told him to get out.”

Harry says he believed that William wanted him to hit back, claiming that he could see the same judgment-clouding anger in his brother that he had felt for years: “I chose not to. What was different here was the level of frustration. I talk about the red mist that I had for so many years, and I saw this red mist in him.”

The brothers’ relationship, Harry writes, changed dramatically over time. “In some ways he was my mirror, in some ways he was my opposite. My beloved brother, my archnemesis, how had that happened?”

He asked that question after William appeared not to understand Harry’s decision to leave his royal duties — a decision that Harry felt should require no explanation at all.

“I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. It was one thing to disagree about who was at fault … but for him to claim total ignorance of the reasons I’d fled … why my wife and I took the drastic step of picking up our child and just running like hell … Really?” Harry continued.

Harry also takes aim at his father in “Spare” — even the title is a direct jab at King Charles III, who allegedly informed the late Princess Diana that his work was finished once William and Harry (“an heir and a spare”) were born.

He writes of one instance in which the king had allegedly fed the press a story about William and Kate and their children — a story that led a “seething” William and Harry to confront their father together.

“Pa instantly got upset. He began shouting that Willy was paranoid. We both were. Just because we were getting bad press, and he was getting good, that didn’t mean his staff was behind it,” Harry writes.

And while he said that the confrontation did not lead to changes from their father, he had initially believed that he and William were recovering their earlier closeness. But Harry goes on to allege that even after they promised they would never turn their press houses against each other, William broke his word.

“I would far rather get destroyed in the press than play along with this game or this business of trading. And to see my brother’s office copy the very same thing that we promised the two of us would never, ever do,” Harry says in the Netflix docuseries, “that was heartbreaking.”

The problem for many of the senior royals, Harry alleges, all centered on the fact that Markle had stolen their spotlight. “The issue is when someone who’s marrying in, who should be a supporting act, is then stealing the limelight or is doing the job better than the person who is born to do this, that upsets people. It shifts the balance,” he claims.

Despite all that, Harry continues to claim that he would like to reconcile with both his father and his brother — but royal expert Katie Nicholls doesn’t believe that claim holds any water.

“The idea that he wants his father and his brother back just seems so incongruous with how he is behaving and what he’s saying … To paint such an unflattering picture of the royal family and a very unsavory side of his brother and an uncaring side of his father … It just does not appear to be the actions of a man trying to reconcile with his estranged family. It really feels like a line has been crossed.”

Others have noted that the Palace’s default position is to not respond to attacks and allegations — a position of which Harry was well aware — so he likely knew that he would have free reign to continue to level very public attacks without any fear of reprisal from the people he was attacking.

Harry’s claims — and blames — circulated via social media in the week ahead of the book’s release, prompting a number of people to respond with the hashtag “shutupHarry.”

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