Harry's Spare memoir: burning bridges and settling scores
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The Windsors really are the ultimate dysfunctional family. If they lived on a sink estate, Channel5 would be making them the stars of a fly on the wall documentary, and we’d be sneering at their chaotic lives.
But they have titles, flunkies and live in palaces - and we are all standing gawping at the wreckage of their relationships which have been laid bare by the leaks from Harry’s memoirs ahead of their official publication date.
As gossip goes, this is glorious, hilarious stuff. Forget all the ‘royals in crisis’ headlines - it may cause some folk to squirm with embarrassment, but none of what we have read thus far is going to bring down the House of Windsor. I doubt anything will.
For someone who has railed against media intrusion all his life, Harry has gone much deeper than any palace insider on the payroll of the tabloids.
I’m really not sure what he stands to gain from putting into the public domain everything from how he lost his virginity to a kill tally of 25 Taliban while serving in Afghanistan. Did we need to know either?
One is so toe-curling it could have come straight from the pages of one of those jolly romps that earned Jilly Cooper a very decent living. The other is a strange one which has already been taken out context of his thoughts on the war which are genuinely interesting. It just feels clunky and may sit uneasily with the men he served with.
But, all leaks go straight to the juicy stuff. They’re catnip for audiences in print and online. We’ll be sniggering over the gushing words of Harry’s ghost writer for years to come.
As for his fight with his brother, c’mon Harry, you fought in a war and yet you were left distressed by a shove which broke your necklace? I had a mate whose big brother used your forehead as a darts board - if he hit 180, you were heading to casualty.
It does seem sad that the guy who earned genuine respect for his work on the Endeavour Games has pretty much undone all that with this score-settling whinge which doesn’t so much burn all his bridges as cremates them. As policies aimed at reconciliation go, this one is an absolute corker. He either has no advisors, or is simply not listening to them.
And the next time he rails against media intrusion, Harry will simply be referred back to pages 46, 124, 467 and many others in which he reveals the most private moments involving family members.
I cannot imagine Princess Anne revealing what she said to a dying Monarch, or divulging out of context, catty comments from frosty moments between the brothers and their wives.
In doing so, Harry steps deep into the world of trashy celebrity news which devoured every movement of his late mother’s life. He does have a story and he has the right to tell it, but if it comes at the expense of his family, is it really, really worth the pain and anguish? Only time will tell.