Royally busted?: 17 ‘untruths’

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex Image: Getty Images.

Royally busted?: 17 ‘untruths’, ‘exaggerations’ from Meghan and Harry’s interview

Piers Morgan says 17 of the claims Meghan Markle and Prince Harry made in their Oprah interview are ‘untrue, exaggerated or unverified’.

Royally busted?: 17 ‘untruths’

Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex and Meghan Markle, Duchess of Sussex Image: Getty Images.

Piers Morgan recently said that 17 claims made by Prince Harry and the “delusional duchess” Meghan Markle in their bombshell Oprah Winfrey interview in March have since been proved to be false, exaggerated or are unverifiable. 

Morgan recently sat down for a tell-all interview with Fox News host Tucker Carlson, where he said that he believes he was right to question Meghan’s sincerity. He then went on to defend his right to freedom of speech and called for an end to “cancel culture”.

While he did not specify what the 17 claims were, The Daily Mail shared a breakdown of these claims which has been highly speculated:

Harry and Meghan’s disproven claims

No ‘backyard’ wedding

In the interview, Meghan revealed that they were actually secretly married three days before the Windsor ceremony by the Archbishop of Canterbury. But, just two weeks after the Oprah interview aired, Harry and Meghan admitted they did not get married three days before the Royal wedding after an official certificate blew their claim apart. They said that the ceremony with the Archbishop of Canterbury in Kensington Palace saw them just ‘privately exchange personal vows’.

The Archbishop of Canterbury has also rejected the couple’s claim that they married at a secret ceremony before the Windsor Castle wedding.

He said: “The legal wedding was on the Saturday. I signed the wedding certificate, which is a legal document, and I would have committed a serious criminal offence if I signed it knowing it was false.”

Archie has a birthright to be a prince

In the interview, Meghan said: “Idea of the first member of colour in this family, not being titled in the same way that other grandchildren would be… It’s not their right to take it away.” 

According to reports, under the George V rules, Archie would be entitled to be an HRH or a prince when his grandfather Charles, the Prince of Wales, accedes to the throne. That William and Kate’s children have the HRH title and are styled as prince and princesses – and Archie is not – stems from this ruling set more than 100 years ago.

In 1917, King George V issued a written order that only royal offspring who are in the direct line of succession could be made a prince and receive HRH titles.

The Letters Patent read: “…the grandchildren of the sons of any such sovereign in the direct male line (save only the eldest living son of the eldest son of the Prince of Wales) shall have and enjoy in all occasions the style and title enjoyed by the children of dukes of these our realms.”

Under the rules, only Prince William and the Duchess of Cambridge’s eldest son Prince George – as a great-grandson of the monarch down the direct line of succession to the throne – was originally entitled to be a prince.

The Queen stepped in ahead of George’s birth in 2013 to issue a Letters Patent to ensure all George’s siblings – as the children of future monarch William – would have fitting titles, meaning they were extended to Charles and Louis.

Archie wouldn’t get 24/7 security because he wasn’t a prince

In the interview, Meghan said: “In those months when I was pregnant, all around this same time, so we (had) the conversation of he won’t be given security, he’s not going to be given a title.” 

But, it is said that being a prince or princess does not automatically mean royals have police protection. Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie’s security is no longer paid for by the taxpayer. After they stepped down as senior members of the royal family, Harry and Meghan no longer receive British police protection, and are understood to be paying for private security. 

Meghan has not seen Samantha Markle in almost 20 years

In the interview, Meghan said: “The last time I saw her must have been at least 18, 19 years.”

During the interview Meghan distanced herself from her half-sister Samantha, who she said she hardly knows and she grew up “an only child”.

A photograph from 2008 – 13 years ago – shows Meghan with Samantha at her graduation. Samantha has since also slammed the royal’s interview with Oprah Winfrey, saying “the truth was totally ignored and omitted” while providing photos and documents to disprove each of Meghan’s claims about her.

Newspaper held story about Thomas Markle until Sunday before Meghan’s wedding

Meghan claimed that “the tabloids had apparently known for a month” that Thomas Markle had staged paparazzi photos before their wedding but “decided to hold till the Sunday before our wedding… to create drama,” adding: “They did not report the news, they created the news”. She suggested she had ‘lost’ her father forever as a result. 

In truth, far from sitting on the paparazzi story, the Mail on Sunday, which broke it, published within 24 hours of getting the proof.

‘Exaggerated’ claims made by Meghan Markle

On being ‘silenced’

Meghan said she was “silenced” by the institution. “Everyone in my world was given very clear directive, from the moment the world knew Harry and I were dating, to say ‘No comment'”.

On the day they announced their engagement, Meghan and Harry gave a lengthy interview to the BBC‘s Mishal Husain, although the duchess reportedly complained afterwards that the journalist had not been “warm enough”. On their tour of South Africa, they granted interviews to ITN‘s Tom Bradby, when Meghan memorably told him: “Not many people have asked if I’m OK”.  

Royal insiders have since stressed that it was very much the case that Harry and Meghan themselves “called the shots” when it came to publicity, deciding which charities to support, which engagements to go on, and which media to grant interviews to.

Meghan never researched the Royal Family prior to joining

Meghan’s claim that she never researched Harry, nor the Royal Family, before entering into the relationship is at odds with claims made in the couple’s biography.

Although the Sussexes maintain they did not contribute to Finding Freedom, it was written by journalists Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand, who say the book was impeccably well-sourced by those closest to the couple.

Prior to their first date at Dean Street Townhouse in 2016, the authors write: “Naturally both participants in this blind date did their homework with a thorough Google search. Harry, who scoped out Meghan on social media, was interested.”

Friends of the duchess have painted a different picture, revealing that she was fascinated by the royals in her youth. Ninaki Priddy, who was Meghan’s maid of honour at her first wedding to Trevor Engelson, said her friend was “always fascinated by the Royal Family. She wants to be Princess Diana 2.0”.

Harry was financially cut off from the royals 

When Harry and Meghan announced their intention to step back from being senior royals, they said they wanted to be “financially independent”. Before cutting ties, 95% of their money came from Prince Charles’s income from the Duchy of Cornwall, and 5% from the taxpayer-funded Sovereign Grant.

Princes William and Harry also received millions from their mother Princess Diana. Harry is also thought to have had millions left to him by the Queen mother. 

Father who staged photos  

Meghan estranged father Thomas denied his daughter’s claims he had “betrayed” her. He says that he’s apologized “100 times” for doing a deal with a paparazzi photographer before the royal wedding in 2018 and urged the couple to see him now that they live closer.

He also denied the Royal Family – or Britain – is racist, calling Meghan and Harry’s claims “bulls**t” and saying if it is true a royal asked about how “dark” Archie’s skin would be, it was probably just a “dumb question”.

Unverifiable claims made by the duke and duchess of Sussex

Meghan says she begged the Palace to help her mental state. Harry, meanwhile, said he was ashamed of admitting to his family that Meghan needed help, and so he did not talk to them. 

The duke, who is passionate about the mental health campaign he launched, called Heads Together, and has himself sought therapy in the past, said that with his wife he “had no idea what to do”.

“He is attached to many of the biggest mental health charities in Britain,” Piers said in the interview. “He makes no secret of his desire that everyone who feels depressed or anxious or has suicidal thoughts to get immediate help, and yet here was his wife who says she was feeling constantly suicidal, and Prince Harry never sought to get her help. And I find that very hard to believe frankly.”

The couple witnessed racism inside the monarchy 

Meghan said: “[There were] concerns and conversations about how dark his [Archie’s] skin might be when he’s born'”.

Harry and Meghan said they will never reveal the person who made these comments. However, Oprah revealed that Harry confirmed it was not the Queen nor Prince Philip. After the interview, Buckingham Palace said that “recollections may vary” of the events described by Meghan and Harry.  

Prince Charles also reportedly wanted to release a “point by point” response to the couple’s claims but decided against it because he didn’t want to give “more ammunition”. 

Kate made Meghan cry before her wedding to Harry  

Reports of a pre-wedding clash between the duchesses first emerged in November 2018, when sources claimed Meghan had been left displeased with a “stressful” dress fitting for the flower girls. Accounts differed as to the source of the row. Some said it was a disagreement on whether the bridesmaids should wear tights – Meghan reportedly believed they should not.

Meghan had to turn over her passport, keys and driving license to royal aides

Meghan said: ‘”When I joined that family, that was the last time I saw my passport, my driving license, my keys – all of that gets turned over.”

Senior royals are often pictured driving themselves and it is believed there have never been prior claims of a royal having keys and passports held. Harry and Meghan received police protection, meaning their travel was meticulously planned by officers. 

Meghan’s press team didn’t defend her when “things weren’t true

Mail on Sunday royal correspondent Emily Andrews has said that Meghan’s press team did, in fact, defend untrue stories, saying this was”‘just not right”. 

Andrews said that she interacted with a press team who defended the Sussexes “again and again and again, told me things were wrong – so didn’t publish – and indeed tried to stop me when true”.

Palace lied to protect other members of the Royal Family

Meghan said: “I came to understand that not only was I not being protected but that they were willing to lie to protect other members of the family, but they weren’t willing to tell the truth to protect me and my husband.”

It is said that the Palace did robustly stand ground on many other stories that the couple insisted were not true, resulting in the media not running them. The Palace pursued at least one national newspaper all the way to press regulator IPSO over a story about their Frogmore home and won a decisive victory for Harry and Meghan.

Palace sources have hit back at the idea the duchess was left to fend for herself, suggesting it was her own aides who needed protection from her bullying ways – something she strenuously denies.

Meghan was banned from going out for lunch with her friends 

Meghan: “I remember so often people within The Firm would say, ‘Well, you can’t do this because it’ll look like that. You can’t’… so, even, ‘Can I go and have lunch with my friends?’ ‘No, no, no. You’re oversaturated. You’re everywhere. It would be best for you to not go out to lunch with your friends.’ I go, ‘Well, I haven’t left the house in months.”

Meghan appears to be talking about a four-year period, and it is likely the situation varied. She was spotted enjoying outings on numerous occasions, including a pub lunch with Harry, going for facials near their Kensington Palace home and shopping trips. 

When the couple decided to leave the Royal family 

Early in the Oprah interview, Meghan said she joined the Royal family with the intention of devoting her life to service. Later, when asked if the Queen was “shocked” by Megxit, Meghan said Harry had been talking to his grandmother about stepping down for “two years”.  

Harry and Meghan’s combined murky timeline of when they expressed their intention of stepping down as senior Royals left this question unanswered.