Prince Harry’s recent revelations and claims don’t have the power to destroy the monarchy, journalist Jeremy Paxman believes. The former BBC Newsnight host said the Duke of Sussex’s complaints and allegations “belong in a soap opera”. Nevertheless, he added the tensions between Harry and Prince William described by the royal are “instantly recognisable” as they are a common trait in all families.
While he did not dismiss the experiences of the fifth-in-line to the throne, Mr Paxman said the Duke’s decision to share intimate details of his relationship with the Firm and its members and making allegations regarding the Royal Family’s inner workings won’t have “constitutional implications at all”.
He wrote in the Sunday Telegraph: “There are no constitutional implications at all, just a series of moans from a very privileged young man who now says he found the role of ‘spare’ irksome. There is only one thing to say to that: ‘Grow up!'”
Insisting the book won’t chip the monarchy’s ability to still flourish in Britain for decades to come, the legendary interviewer added in his op-ed: “The strength of the monarchical system is that it is instantly intelligible to those who live under it simply because we all grow up in families and understand that each contains different individuals who are intelligent, dim, sports-mad or DIY enthusiasts”.
The journalist also recalled how the untimely death of Princess Diana in Paris 25 years ago and Prince Edward’s It’s a Royal Knockout! were also seen by contemporaries as events that would doom the monarchy.
Mr Paxman wrote: “The institution survived, as it will flourish after this airing of dirty linen.”
In his book, which hit the shelves worldwide on January 10, the Duke of Sussex recounts his whole life under the public eye, from his childhood to fatherhood.
He speaks of his relationship with King Charles – who he said tried his best to be a single parents, but is also accused to trade him with the press for positive coverage of himself and Queen Camilla – as well as of his grief following the death of the late Princess of Wales.
Much space is dedicated to Prince William and how cracks in their relationship started to appear years before previously thought.
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“As I know full well, within my family, if it’s not us, it’s going to be someone else.
“And though William and I have talked about it once or twice, and he has made it very clear to me that his kids are not my responsibility, I still feel a responsibility knowing that out of those three children, at least one will end up like me, the spare. And that hurts, that worries me.”
Elsewhere during this interview, the Duke also said that, demanding change is “not about trying to collapse the monarchy, this is about trying to save them from themselves”.
He added: “And I know that I will get crucified by numerous people for saying that.”