Princess Diana’s Private Secretary Isn’t Happy With Meghan And Harry
Royal fans will recognize the name Patrick Jephson as the person behind Diana, Princess of Wales. As her private secretary, he traveled with Princess Diana around the world, from the time she was the Royal Family’s rising star through when her marriage to Prince Charles ended. Jephson lived to tell the tale and wrote the New York Times bestselling book Shadows of a Princess about his time with Diana, until his time of service with her ended in 1996, when Diana did her now infamous Panorama interview (via The Guardian).
Knowing full well the damage a tete-a-tete with the press could cause, Jephson went on CNN to warn Prince Harry and Meghan Markle about the likely consequences that could come down on their heads if they spoke to the media about their time in the palace. “The precedence for royal interviews of this kind are not very encouraging. Both Prince Charles and Princess Diana and more recently Prince Andrew have tried to put their sides of the story on TV through these sorts of interviews and in all cases, it has backfired,” Patrick Jephson said (via Parade).
Princess Diana's secretary on the stakes of a royal family squabble
But Patrick Jephson didn’t just deliver a warning that an interview could trigger unintended consequences. He also wanted to put out a reminder about the stakes of the Royal Family’s internal squabble, which is now playing out for the world to see. Even as he said the events which were unfolding were reminiscent of what played out between Diana and the Royal Family, he noted, “I’m quite sure there are lot of unhappy people involved now … at the heart of this there are real people, really hurting. I hope that somewhere in the midst of the current back and forth, somebody’s putting down the seeds for eventual reconciliation” (via CNN).
Queen Elizabeth II has indicated through her statement that she intends to deal with the situation with Harry and Meghan. Her former press secretary, Charles Anson, has told Sky News that the events are challenging in and of themselves, and that the Queen wants to handle things in a fair manner, “but in the family circle rather than by public diplomacy” (via Vanity Fair).
Another press secretary, Dickie Arbiter, says, “They’ve [the Royal Family] taken it in house and they’ll deal with it. They won’t shove it under the carpet. These are serious allegations and it will have been all hands on deck. I expect palace aides will have gone over the interview again and discussed it in detail before issuing the statement.”
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