Prince Harry and Prince William were once close friends who were there for each other through thick and thin – and even decided to rent a cottage together while they were training to be helicopter pilots in 2009.
Just over a decade later, jokes are few and far between.
British historian Robert Lacey tells it New York Post Their feud is far from over. They predict new tensions could arise after the Queen called the family back together to review the Megxit deal struck earlier this year.
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“The gap is getting worse every day,” said Lacey Die Post of the feud that caught fire after Harry and his wife Meghan Markle left the Windsor house in March.
Battle of the Brothers: William and Harry: The Inside Story of a Family in Trouble, records the ups and downs of the sibling relationship, which, according to the author, is currently at an all-time low.
“The chickens came home to sleep,” said the author, who is also the historical advisor to The crown on Netflix.
“We thought the clutter, chaos, and tragedy of the 80s and 90s that her parents were involved in was over. Now (it’s all) these two boys’ shape comes back to life. You are the heir to all of this heartache. ”
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It refers to the fairytale wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer in 1981, followed by Charles’ infidelity with Camilla Parker Bowles, their bitter divorce in 1996, and Diana’s tragic death in a car accident a year later.
Lacey explained how the sons drew conflicting conclusions from what went wrong.
“Both speak about the importance of mental health and acknowledge that they are mentally vulnerable. But they dealt with it in different ways, ”he said.
38-year-old William received advice on community engagement from his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II. He drew strength from the idea of one day becoming king.
As a result, Lacey said, “When he meets Kate Middleton at university, he actually makes the poor young woman wait nine years to effectively audition her for the job of the head of state’s wife. He has taken the lesson of duty. ”
In contrast, 36-year-old Harry took the “opposite” lesson – that he was the victim of the “arranged marriage” between the virgin Diana and worldly Charles, who “quickly became loveless”.
“His attitude was, ‘Well, I’m not going to make the same mistake my parents made,'” said Lacey. ‘I get married for love.’ And he was so happy and proud to announce that he has practically loved Meghan since meeting her in 2016. This impulse guided him. ”
Lacey thinks it’s a “tragedy” that Markle is no longer part of the clan.
“We added a mixed member to the family, but 30 months later she is no longer royalty. I think you missed an incredible opportunity there. ”
Lacey accuses Buckingham Palace’s congested residents of disregarding Meghan and Harry’s popular status as “rock star royals” that overshadowed William and Kate.
“Everyone thought Harry was going to marry a nice girl named Henrietta or Annabel and live in the country,” Lacey said.
“Instead, he finds Meghan full of American piss and vinegar, energy and independence of thought. If you put someone in the old-fashioned, creaky structure of the House of Windsor who is a crusader, devoted to women’s rights and social change, she is not going to give up those traits.
“When she came to the UK she thought it was a new platform. While the royal family did not see themselves as a platform for them at all. ”
Harry, meanwhile, was appalled that William, along with Charles and, more broadly, the Queen, seemed unwilling to open up to the possibility that Meghan might become more of an activist.
The last straw, according to Lacey in Battle of the Brothers, came when the Queen delivered her 2019 Christmas show without a portrait of Meghan, Harry or their son Archie.
“Whoever stands on the royal Christmas desk or not has always been like the changing face panorama on the historic balcony of the Moscow Kremlin,” writes Lacey.
“It showed who was for it and who wasn’t – and in Windsor in December 2019 this was even extended to babies.”
In March 2021, the family will “review” the Megxit – with the Queen in all likelihood hoping to bring Harry and Meghan home. But Lacey predicts the summit will lead to an even greater separation.
“It is less and less likely for a reconciliation,” he said. “I don’t see a way back for Harry, not into the working royal family.”
This article originally appeared in the New York Post and is reproduced here with permission
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