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TOM BOWER: Palace must hit back… if it wants to win over the under thirties 

Battered by Prince Harry’s ceaseless barrage of poisonous spite, King Charles and Prince William have so far decided that silence is their only dignified response.

Adhering to Buckingham Palace’s maxim of ‘Never complain, never explain’, their courtiers insist that the best answer to the torrent of hurtful revelations and vitriol is to say nothing.

The Royal Family, these advisers argue, can remain safe by standing aloof on the moral high ground. A refusal to join in the mudslinging will be rewarded by public support.

This strategy derives from a belief that the British media’s overwhelming damnation of Harry’s book accurately reflects the mood of all Britons – and that Harry’s serial treachery has caused only superficial harm to the country’s global reputation.

However, I believe that Charles, William and these advisers are making a terrible mistake.

Battered by Prince Harry’s ceaseless barrage of poisonous spite, King Charles and Prince William have so far decided that silence is their only dignified response. Pictured: King Charles and Prince William at the Sandringham estate, December 25, 2022

The stark truth is that Harry has inflicted colossal damage on the Royal Family’s reputation for decency and probity.

Continuing silence also risks alienating for good the sizeable minority – especially among the under-30s – who sympathise with the Sussexes. Although it is unprecedented, William should make a crafted televised statement to regain the initiative.

But he faces a huge task at a time when social media tries to dictate public opinion and when there is a powerful narrative that Harry is the ‘victim’ of an uncaring father, a hostile elder brother and a ‘dangerous’ stepmother.

Add the notion that Meghan suffered from the Royal Family’s racism, and there is the additional challenge of protecting Britain’s reputation in countries that have majority black populations.

Until now, the merciless Sussexes have made a multi-million-dollar fortune in the knowledge that the Royal Family would remain doleful, mute punch bags.

That silence must now end.

Although it is unprecedented, William should make a crafted televised statement to regain the initiative. Pictured: Prince William and Prince Harry in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace, London, July 1, 2021

Although it is unprecedented, William should make a crafted televised statement to regain the initiative. Pictured: Prince William and Prince Harry in the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace, London, July 1, 2021

Once Harry’s whinge-fest circus hits the buffers, William should make a dignified statement.

After stressing his love for his brother and reminding the world how warmly Meghan was welcomed by Britons, and especially the Royals, he should explain that recollections differ.

He should say that Meghan’s expectations of starring as a global celebrity campaigner, using the British Royal Family as a platform, could never be satisfied. The Royal Family’s sole purpose is to serve Britons and the Commonwealth. Historically, there is only one star: the monarch.

At the heart of the statement should be an expression of sadness that Harry has lost faith in his family.

Harry is a troubled man. His psychological problems seem to have festered despite years of therapy – and many have pointed out that they may have been aggravated by his self-confessed drug use.

Harry’s use of narcotics did not alarm Meghan or her mother Doria. As I discovered while researching my Meghan biography, Harry has been a frequent user of cannabis in California where the drug is legal. Significantly, Meghan gave a bag of cannabis to each of the 105 guests at her first wedding in Jamaica in 2011.

For all the Duchess’s famed opinions on social issues, she has never condemned smoking weed, despite its harmful effects.

Once Harry¿s whinge-fest circus hits the buffers, William should make a dignified statement. Pictured: Prince Harry leaves Stephen Colbert's The Late Show, New York, January 9, 2023

Once Harry’s whinge-fest circus hits the buffers, William should make a dignified statement. Pictured: Prince Harry leaves Stephen Colbert’s The Late Show, New York, January 9, 2023

Undoubtedly, any statement of William’s would not refer to the possibility that Harry’s wrecking-ball behaviour is linked to the taking of cocaine, ketamine, weed and Nepalese hashish which he has admitted in his memoir.

Nor would he address the question of whether Meghan was ever willing to serve Britain as a loyal, discreet member of the Royal Family. Indeed, the couple’s wedding guest list – which excluded her family except her mother and included Hollywood celebrities she barely knew – showed her overweening personal ambition.

But as heir to the throne and the man likely to lead the monarchy into the second half of the century, William must challenge the Sussexes’ already flawed credibility. Otherwise, these issues could prove fatal to the Royal Family.

The sooner William speaks out and sets the record straight, the sooner he can save his family’s – and Britain’s – reputation. It would also be a critical move to help shut down the Sussexes’ grubby, money-making machine.

Tom Bower’s biography of Meghan Markle, Revenge, is published by Blink at £10.99.

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Read more at DailyMail.co.uk



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