Prince Harry’s name has been ubiquitous in the media the last week since details from his hotly anticipated autobiography, Spare, was leaked by The Guardian far away ahead of tomorrow’s release, unofficially kicking off a flurry of juicy excerpted stories that centered around Harry’s military service, his thoughts on the deaths of Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth II, and his troubled relationship with other members of the Royal Family.
In perhaps the most widespread quote, which was cited by the BBC, Harry wrote about his two tours in the military fighting in Afghanistan, and revealed that at the time, he did not view the opposition forces as humans. “In truth, you can’t hurt people if you see them as people. They were chess pieces taken off the board, bad guys eliminated before they kill good guys…They trained me to ‘other’ them and they trained me well.”
Harry also claimed to have been involved in the killing of 25 Taliban members across six missions, a disclosure met with criticism by British military leaders for its potential to stoke flames of tension. “His suggestion that he killed 25 people will have re-incited those people who wish him harm,” retired Colonel Richard Kemp. said in a Sky News interview, “Let’s hope they don’t succeed and I’m sure he’s got pretty good security, but that’s one problem. Kemp also expressed displeasure at how Harry described the “othering” that British military personnel does of its opposition, saying, “It’s the opposite of the case.”
Spare also addresses the tension between him and his older brother, Prince William. Harry criticizes family members’ reactions in the wake of Queen Elizabeth II’s death, and how they were hostile towards his wife Meghan Markle. In an incendiary excerpt quoted by The Guardian, Harry wrote about a physical altercation between himself and his brother, William, that took place in 2019. According to Harry’s book, William insulted Harry’s wife, and a fight escalated in which William “grabbed me by the collar, ripping my necklace, and he knocked me to the floor. I landed on the dog’s bowl, which cracked under my back, the pieces cutting into me. I lay there for a moment, dazed, then got to my feet and told him to get out,” he wrote.
Harry also sat with Anderson Cooper for a long time. 60 Minutes interviews this week, in which the prince admitted that when his mother, Princess Diana, died in 1997 when he was only 12, he didn’t believe it when told the awful news. “For a long time, I just refused to accept that she was—she was gone,” he said. “Part of, you know, she would never do this to us, but also part of, maybe this is all part of a plan.”
He also admitted later that he still doesn’t feel he has all of the information on what happened to his mother, and that he and William have “considered reopening the inquest,” but are unlikely to do so at this juncture.
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