- Tom BradbyBritish journalist and novelist
The Duke of Sussex accused the Prince and Princess of Wales of “stereotyping” his wife, Meghan, as a “divorced biracial American actress”.
Prince Harry told ITV on Sunday night that his brother had voiced concerns about him marrying the Duchess, and claimed that Prince William and his wife had never got on with Meghan “from the get-go”.
The Duke was interviewed by ITV’s News at Ten anchor Tom Bradby to promote his memoir, Spare, which is officially published on Tuesday.
He said that the Waleses had never expected him to begin a relationship with “someone like Meghan who had a very successful career”.
“There was a lot of stereotyping that was happening, that I was guilty of as well, at the beginning,” he said.
“American actress, right, and that was playing out in the British press in the media at the time as well. Some of the things that my brother and sister-in-law – some of the way that they were acting or behaving – definitely felt to me as though, unfortunately, that stereotyping was causing a bit of a barrier to them really sort of, you know, introducing or welcoming her in.”
Pressed on what he meant, he added: “Well, American actress, divorced, biracial, there’s all different parts to that and what that can mean.”
He said the Prince of Wales had never tried to dissuade him from marrying the Duchess, but did air “some concerns” very early, suggesting it was going to be “really hard” for him.
“I still to this day don’t truly understand which part of what he was talking about,” he said.
The interview was the first in a series due over the coming days that are expected to generate huge audiences and whip up interest in the Duke’s book.
Prince Harry insisted that he and Meghan had never accused the Royal family of racism, rowing back on claims made in their Oprah Winfrey interview.
Buckingham Palace was engulfed in a race crisis when Meghan told Winfrey in March 2021 that when she was pregnant with her son, Archie, there were “concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he was born”.
Prince Harry said it was “awkward” and he was “a bit shocked”.
However, asked by Bradby whether he did not consider that “essentially racist”, he replied: “I wouldn’t, not having lived within that family.”
The Duke accused the Queen Consort of leaking stories as he claimed certain members of the Royal family had decided to “get in bed with the devil”.
The Duke also suggested that his father was “never quite ready for parenthood” but insisted that he will “always love” the King despite their current difficulties.
He said he had made it his life’s mission to reform the media as he accused tabloids of being a “dreadful mob of dweebs” and suggested that only “beard people” would understand his anger at Prince William for demanding he shave off his facial hair for his wedding day.
Prince Harry also voiced support for Lady Susan Hussey, the late Queen’s former lady-in-waiting, who was accused of racism, and spoke out for the first time against Jeremy Clarkson, whose article about Meghan in The Sun he described as “horrific”, “hurtful” and “cruel.”
The Duke suggested the Prince and Princess of Wales had formed their views about Meghan through the media rather than their own experiences.
“If you are, like a lot of my family, reading the press, the British tabloids, at the same time as living the life, then there is a tendency where you could actually end up living in the tabloid bubble rather than the actual reality,” he said.
Bradby said: “But the impression is that – that they just – from the get-go it’s just they don’t get on. Fair?”
“Yeah, fair,” Harry replied.
He said there were “lots of different reasons” why that was the case, admitting that he had come to realise he had “put a lot” of hope into the idea that his brother and sister-in-law would form a foursome with him and his chosen wife that would bring him and William closer together.
The Duke said the “fab four” was simply a media construct that had created competition between the two couples. “Very quickly it became Meghan versus Kate,” he added. “And that, when it plays out so publicly, you can’t hide from that.”
He said that as the “new kids on the block”, he and the Duchess were stealing the limelight, just as William and Catherine had attracted attention away from Charles and Camilla when they married.
The Duke said he had never considered himself as in competition with his father or his brother and assumed it would all be fine.
“How wrong I was,” he added.