As we discussed, People Magazine’s print issue this week has an exclusive excerpt from the new Finding Freedom epilogue. The cover story is all about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s Thrive Era, and it features an interview with Omid Scobie in addition to the book excerpt. Scobie and Carolyn Durand apparently quote “a friend of Meghan” and this is how it’s written in the epilogue:
“The queen’s ‘recollections may vary’ comment did not go unnoticed by the couple, who, a close source said, were ‘not surprised’ that full ownership was not taken. ‘Months later and little accountability has been taken,’ a pal of Meghan added. ‘How can you move forward with that?’”
So, obviously, the British tabloids have been freaking out about that for hours now and all of the royal commentators are chiming in about how Meghan and Harry are attacking the Queen personally and publicly. So the Sussexes… had their lawyers send out legal notices:
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have hit back at claims that they have “reignited a rift” with the royals by “publicly attacking” the queen. Their lawyers, Schillings, have written to at least one major British newspaper saying that the claims are “false and inaccurate,” a source at one paper told The Daily Beast.
The claims, similar to those made yesterday in The Daily Beast, dominated the front pages of major British newspapers Thursday. They were based on a new chapter of the book Finding Freedom, excerpts of which were published by People magazine in the U.S. this week.
In a sign that the relationship between Omid Scobie and the Sussex establishment might be fraying, a British newspaper source told The Daily Beast that journalists have been told they need to tread carefully when writing about the duke and duchess. “It seems to be an increasing trigger point for the Sussexes,” the source said. “The claims that have been published were sourced from a new chapter in the unauthorised biography, Finding Freedom. The attorneys for Harry and Meghan claim the authors do not speak for them and that the writers have ‘written about their take on matters.’”
The Sussexes have long denied that they co-operated with the authors of the book, Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand. However, Scobie is known to have been a confidant of the couple and was, for example, invited to their farewell party when they left the U.K. Question marks have been raised about how the authors would have had access to a stunning level of detail in the book without Harry and Meghan, at the very least, authorizing their friends to talk. The book relates multiple private conversations and scenes that would have only been known to the couple.
The Daily Beast’s source said: “They’ve created this issue themselves. As they talk to Scobie, they’ve made him their unofficial spokesman so people buy into him.”
The source speculated that Meghan might be ready to “drop” Scobie, saying the episode had “clearly hit a nerve.”
I’m including Scobie’s response below. I honestly don’t know why anyone is freaking out about any of this. The excerpt from FF is pretty mild, all things considered, and the only reason the British tabloids are stoking hysteria about it is because they do that about literally anything involving Harry and Meghan. The “pal of Meghan” quoted said what is abundantly clear as well: of course there was no accountability from the Windsors, and of course there’s no effort to move forward. As for the dynamics between the Sussexes and Omid Scobie… the British media has been trying to drive a wedge between Scobie and the Sussexes for the better part of two years. The Royal Rota has always been really mad that the Sussexes have an ally in the national/international media. Remember that as you’re yelling at Scobie.
Back at this rodeo and, predictably, words are being twisted again.
The comments made by a SOURCE (a detail some outlets have purposefully ignored) were about a lack of ownership from the royal institution as a whole. There is no “attack” against the Queen anywhere in the book.
— Omid Scobie (@scobie) August 19, 2021
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.