As the BBC inquiry into the 1995 Panoroma interview with Princess Diana continues to dominate British headlines, Prince Harry is getting “regular updates” on the story from Los Angeles, and believes that some recent tabloid reports are a deliberate effort to drive a wedge between him and Prince William.
Following a recent tabloid claim that Harry was failing to stand by William’s side in supporting the investigation, a source close to the Duke of Sussex told Vanity Fair, “Harry is getting regular updates and is aware of everything that is happening; you do not need a public statement to imagine how he is feeling privately—people know how much his mother means to him. He has bravely spoken out in the past about loss and grief, and the immense impact it has had on him. Sadly, some people are not just seeing this as a drive for truth, but also trying to use this as an opportunity to try to drive a wedge between the brothers.”
On Wednesday William issued a public statement calling the investigation “a step in the right direction,” and something that “should help establish the truth” about how Martin Bashir persuaded Diana to sit down for the bombshell interview, in which she shed new light on her faltering marriage to Prince Charles. Harry was deeply upset by the accusation that he was failing to support his brother during the investigation, and told a friend that protecting his mother’s legacy is hugely important to him and that any suggestion otherwise is “offensive.”
Another source close to Harry said that he has given careful thought to making a public statement about the investigation but he has understandable reservations. “He cares about his mother’s legacy deeply and of course he wants to know the truth,” the source said. “But he is also wary that this is a campaign that has been led by the tabloid press who he feels had a part to play in his mother’s death.”
It is not known if Harry and William, who have had a falling out over the past two years, have been in discussed the latest developments in the investigation. But Vanity Fair has been told that Harry has been in regular touch with his Uncle Earl Spencer, who was the first person to lead calls for an investigation into malpractice at the BBC over the Panorama interview.
Earl Spencer has publicly spoken about the “sheer dishonesty” of the BBC’s practices, saying that in 1995 he was duped into believing that his staff were selling stories about him to the tabloids. Bashir had shown Spencer fake bank statements that purported to show payments from News International to his head of security.
Spencer has also accused Bashir of telling Diana a series of elaborate lies that made her so paranoid she had her office swept for bugs and believed her own staff were spying on her,
Many, including Diana’s biographer and former Vanity Fair Editor Tina Brown believe that the Panorama interview was the beginning of the end for the princess and shaped the events leading up to her death in Paris in 1997.
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