Meghan Markle’s estranged father Thomas today denied his daughter’s claims to Oprah that he had ‘betrayed’ her before branding his son-in-law Harry ‘snotty’ and accusing him of failing to properly support her when she was suicidal.
Mr Markle says that he’s apologised ‘100 times’ for doing a deal with a paparazzi photographer before the Royal Wedding in 2018 and urged the couple to see him with Archie now they only live ’70 miles away’ from his Mexico home.
He said: ‘We all make mistakes – but I’ve never played naked pool or dressed like Hitler like Harry did’.
And in a further attack on Harry, Mr Markle said that his daughter’s admission she was suicidal while living in the UK reflected badly on his son-on-law.
He said: ‘It really did upset me, like I said, it would have been easy for her to reach out to me, any of the rest of her family, who she claims she doesn’t know. But the other thing is that I would think that she could turn to her husband.’ When noted she did speak to Harry, Mr Markle said Meghan’s husband Harry had ‘obviously not supported her that well’.
Mr Markle than slammed his daughter’s decision to refuse to see or speak to him, Mr Markle said: ‘The biggest problem here is she’s pretty much ghosted all of her family’.
The 76-year-old also denied the Royal Family – or Britain – is racist, saying if it is true an unnamed royal asked about how ‘dark’ Archie’s skin would be, it was probably just a ‘dumb question’, before calling Meghan and Harry’s claims ‘bulls**t’.
Mr Markle, who has watched the entire two-hour CBS interview, said he was ‘upset’ when he saw his youngest daughter tell Oprah that royal life was so stressful she was suicidal and ‘couldn’t be left alone’ – but then said Meghan’s husband Harry had ‘obviously not supported her that well’.
He spoke to Good Morning Britain in the UK after watching the Oprah interview with his daughter and her husband, which was watched by 11.1million in Britain last night and tens of millions more when it was shown by CBS in the US on Sunday.
In it Meghan said she could not fathom hurting her son Archie in the way her own father ‘betrayed’ her, admitting she ‘found it hard to reconcile’ with Thomas. She said: ‘I look at Archie, I think about this child, and I genuinely can’t imagine doing anything to intentionally cause pain to my child’.
Mr Markle said that while he did let her down, she had ‘let me down too’ by cutting him off after heart surgery almost three years ago. He said: ‘The bottom line is she didn’t lose me, she made a statement saying she lost me, she didn’t lose me, I would’ve always been there for her, I’m there for her now if she wants me’. He added: ‘We all make mistakes – but I’ve never played naked pool or dressed like Hitler like Harry did’.
Mr Markle was referencing Harry’s decision to wear a Nazi uniform to a party when he was 20 and seven years later in 2012 the prince was photographed wearing nothing but a necklace with a naked female playmate hiding behind him having just played a game of strip pool in his VIP Las Vegas hotel suite.
Describing his last phone call with Harry after heart surgery in May 2018, Mr Markle said: ‘Harry had said to me if you had listened to me, this wouldn’t have happened to you. Me, laying in a hospital bed after a having procedure, I had a stent put here and put here [points at his heart] and that was kind of snotty so I hung up on him.’
But Mr Markle also used the rare interview to urge his daughter to reach out to him. He said: ‘I’d like to say again. I’m sorry for what I’ve done. This was two years ago. But I’ve tried to make it up to her. I’m now only 70 miles away. I’ve never stopped loving her. I don’t agree with all the things that my children they do. But I will always love them. And I certainly love Meghan’.
The GMB show had already made headlines before Mr Markle spoke when host Piers Morgan walked off set live on air after being criticised by weatherman Alex Beresford who accused Mr Morgan of unfairly ‘trashing’ Meghan Markle.
Thomas Markle’s first words on the Oprah interview came as:
- Prince Charles smiled uncomfortably but stayed silent when quizzed about Harry and Meghan’s interview in first public royal engagement since to vaccine centre at majority black church;
- Meghan Markle says everyone should have ‘basic right to privacy’ in latest Oprah interview clip;
- The Queen prepares to sign of an official statement in response to his grandson’s Oprah interview, which contained allegation-after-allegation that damages the global standing of the Royal Family;
- New clips from the interview included Harry alleging that the Queen had reneged on a promise to allow him to visit her Sandringham home to discuss his plans, leaving him devastated;
- Harry and Meghan have been urged to name names over which royal relative made comments about how ‘dark’ Archie’s skin would be and the Duchess’ claims he was not made a prince because he is mixed-race. Labour’s Diane Abbott claims Palace aides did not ‘adjust well’ to Harry marrying a ‘mixed race woman’;
- 11.4 million viewers tuned into ITV’s bombshell Oprah interview with Harry and Meghan last night – fewer than I’m A Celeb final that was network’s most-watched show of 2020;
- Nearly half of Britons believe Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s explosive interview with Oprah Winfrey was ‘inappropriate’, a snap poll had found;
- Meghan Markle’s half-sister Samantha slams her Oprah interview, accusing Duchess of using ‘depression as an excuse to treat people like dishrags’;
Buckingham Palace was paralysed with ‘horror and dismay’ last night as Prince Harry stood accused of ‘blowing up his family’ after his bombshell interview with Meghan.
The Prince of Wales stayed silence when he was asked if he had seen the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s interview with Oprah Winfrey.
Charles was questioned by the media as he made his first public appearance since Meghan and Harry’s devastating claim an un-named member of the royal family made a racist comment about their son.
As Charles left following a visit to a pop-up vaccine clinic in a London church, a reporter asked, ‘Sir, what did you think of the interview?’.
According to reports at the scene, Charles turned around to see who had called out, before smiling and carrying on walking.
The Mail can reveal that the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William were all locked in crisis talks over how to react to a string of incendiary accusations unleashed by the couple during their two-hour special with Oprah Winfrey.
The most damaging appears to be the claim that an unnamed royal asked about how ‘dark’ Archie’s skin would be when he was born. Meghan and Harry have refused to say who it was, but Oprah later said it wasn’t the Queen or Prince Philip.
Thomas Markle has sided with the royals today.
He said: ‘I don’t think the British Royal Family are racist at all. I don’t think the British are racist – I think Los Angeles is racist, California is racist but i don’t think the Brits are’.
He went on: ‘The thing about what colour will the baby be or how dark will the baby be, I’m guessing and hoping it’s just a dumb question from somebody, it could just be that simple – rather than being a total racist.’
He added: ‘This whole thing about colour and how dark the baby is was bulls***.’
‘A racist comment should be investigated. But all I’m saying is it could have been just a stupid question from someone. You know, someone who doesn’t understand a black person marries a white person, what do you get, you know? You never know but you get a baby. That’s what you get, you get a baby. Maybe we’re getting a little too political.’
He was asked about Meghan’s depiction of him betraying him – and said that on her blog before they fell out Meghan had urged other fathers to be more like him.
He said: ‘I’m very disappointed about it. I’ve apologised about this thing [the paparazzi deal] at least 100 times or so, bottom line I’ve never heard back from Meghan and Harry’.
Describing their lost conversation, when he was in hospital before the couple married, he said: ‘I also feel she let me down as well because I was in a hospital bed the last time we talked and I never heard from them again. They didn’t care if i died’.
But urging her to reach out to him, he said: ‘I’d like to say again. I’m sorry for what I’ve done. This was two years ago. But I’ve tried to make it up to her.
‘I’m now only 70 miles away. I’ve never stopped loving her. I don’t agree with all the things that my children they do. But I will always love them. And I certainly love Meghan’.
He added: ‘I’ve been pushed around and knocked down for one thing I did, for one big mistake I made. I’ve apologised for it as many times as I possibly can. However, I love my daughter very much and if I’d known she was having psychological problems, I would have been there for her. Biggest problem here is she’s pretty much ghosted all of her family. On her mother’s side and my side. So, she really had no one to reach out to. She would have had us if she’d kept us’.
Mr Markle was asked about the letter sent to him by his daughter after the royal wedding, which is at the centre of the Duchess’ legal battle with Associated Newspapers, the publisher of the Mail on Sunday and MailOnline.
He said: ‘I’m the one who released a part of the letter. That was because a magazine was doing a story about me, Meghan’s friends were telling a story about me that was mostly lies.
After reading these things, these lies, I said I have to retaliate. By retaliating, I released part of the letter. I didn’t release the whole letter. Had I done that you would have seen something that was horrible’.
He went on: ‘I had held that letter for six months and I was going to destroy it, it was so bad. A lot of things that were said to me […] The people in the magazine said she reached out to me with love and wanted to get back together, that wasn’t the letter at all, that wasn’t what it was intended to do.’
Thomas and the Royal Family are reeling after the Sussexes ‘went nuclear’ on Sunday night.
Meghan’s critics unaired footage from the Oprah interview, which will not feature when it is shown on ITV at 9pm tonight, was released earlier today following the original CBS broadcast on Sunday.
Meghan drew a contrast with her mother Doria Ragland, who she praised for remaining ‘in silent dignity for four years’.
The clip also saw Meghan distance herself from her half-sister Samantha, who has released a ‘tell-all’ book about their relationship.
The Duchess retorted: ‘I think it would be very hard to tell all when you don’t know me.’
She said she grew up ‘an only child’ and even claimed Samantha only changed her surname back to Markle after Meghan struck up a romance with Harry.
The tension between the Markles was addressed in unaired sections of the Sussexes CBS sit-down with Oprah, who probed about her relationship with Thomas.
Thomas was supposed to walk Meghan down the aisle in May 2018 but pulled out of the ceremony following health problems.
The two were also engaged in a row about him speaking to the press.
Oprah asked: ‘Did it feel like betrayal when you found that your father was working with the tabloids?’
After weighing up if she was ‘comfortable’ delving into the issue, Meghan said her father had assured he had ‘absolutely not’ spoken to the press.
She said: ‘If we’re going to use the word betrayal it’s because when I asked him, when we were told by the comms team this was a story that was going to be coming out which, by the way, the tabloids had apparently known for a month or so and decided to hold until the Sunday before our wedding because they wanted to create drama, which is also a key point in all this, they don’t report the news, they create the news.
‘We called my dad, and I asked him, and he said no, absolutely not. I said, you know, the institution has never intervened for anything for us, but they can try to go in and kill this story. But if they do this once, we’re not going to be able to use that same leverage to protect our kids one day.
She added: ‘I said we won’t be able to protect our own kids one day, and I said, I just need you to tell me. If you tell me the truth, we can
‘And he wasn’t able to do that. And that for me has really resonated, especially now as a mother.’
Meghan went on: ‘And also me saying just full stop, if we use this to protect you, we won’t be able to protect our own children one day, I’m talking about your grandchildren.
‘I look at Archie, I think about this child, and I go I genuinely can’t imagine doing anything to intentionally cause pain to my child. I can’t imagine it. So it’s hard for me to reconcile that.’
Buckingham Palace has been paralysed with ‘horror and dismay’ as Prince Harry stands accused of ‘blowing up his family’ with his bombshell interview – with the Queen said to have refused to sign off on a statement.
The Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William were all locked in crisis talks over how to react to a string of incendiary accusations unleashed by Harry and wife Meghan during a two-hour special with Oprah Winfrey on American TV.
With pressure growing for a statement today, Palace insiders described a mood of ‘intense personal shock and sadness’ that the prince had pressed the ‘nuclear button on his own family’. ‘People are just reeling,’ a source said.
The couple’s interview on CBS late on Sunday night sent shock waves around the world yesterday as the couple laid bare the extent of their rift with the Queen and other senior royals.
They accused an unnamed Royal Family member of racism, suggesting the relative had asked ‘how dark’ their baby would be; said they had been driven out of Britain, in part, by racism; and accused the Palace machinery of failing to support a ‘suicidal’ Meghan.
Harry revealed an astonishing rift with his father, saying his family had cut him off financially while suggesting the Queen had been badly advised and had cancelled a meeting scheduled at Sandringham.
Meghan also accused her sister-in-law Kate of making her cry; suggested senior royals plotted to ensure Archie would never have a title or adequate security; and said officials had failed to stand up for the couple against ‘racist’ commentary, while lying to protect other royals.
A senior Government minister and Boris Johnson ally, Lord [Zac] Goldsmith, echoed the mood of many in royal circles yesterday. Responding to the suggestion that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex had ‘loaded up a plane and dropped bomb after heavy bomb on Buckingham Palace’, he tweeted: ‘Not ‘Buckingham Palace’ – Harry’s family. Harry is blowing up his family.’
A statement is understood to have been prepared by Buckingham Palace highlighting the Royal Family’s love for the couple, in attempt to avoid tensions mounting even further. However the Queen was keen not to rush it out without careful consideration overnight, according to The Times.
Buckingham Palace, which was not informed about the couple’s decision to do the interview before it was first announced last month, had been bracing itself for the worst.
But aides could not have predicted how devastatingly brutal the couple’s interview – watched by 17million in the US alone but set to air last night to a global audience of many times more, including on ITV in the UK – would be.
The Mail has been told that royal staff stayed up until 3am to watch the interview via video link live from the US with a mounting sense of horror – and sadness.
The Queen’s private secretary Sir Edward Young and Charles’s private secretary Clive Alderton are both said to have watched the interview from Buckingham Palace.
Palace IT staff had set up a computer link so they could see it, while other members of staff watched it on their laptops while working from home, reported the Daily Telegraph.
Aides then had to prepare briefings from members of the Royal Family and agreed that any response would have to be co-ordinated between the Queen, Charles and William.
As morning broke, crisis meetings were called involving senior officials as well as senior royals, in person and on the phone, as well via video call.
The Queen, at Windsor, spoke with her son Charles, who was at Clarence House, his London home, and grandson William, who has also moved back to the capital from Norfolk in preparation for his children to return to school.
Sources told the Mail that household staff, many of whom had supported the couple as best they could during an ‘extremely difficult and trying three years’, felt ‘angry and let down’ but were determined to put a brave face on the situation for the sake of the elderly monarch.
‘Staff are reeling. But there is [also] a strong sense of needing to retain a dignified silence and show kindness and compassion. There’s a lot people want to say but no one wins with a tit-for-tat battle,’ said one. ‘Bridges need to be built after all this is over, after all.’
Most damaging are the couple’s claims that not only were they unsupported by both family members and staff, but they also suffered as a result of an apparent racist agenda against them.
Meghan suggested that race was the heart of every decision made against them. But there was bemusement among royal insiders at her claims that senior royals had tried to prevent their son, Archie, from having a title – or security – because of blatant prejudice.
‘They didn’t want him to be a prince,’ she told Miss Winfrey.
Long-standing rules, laid down by George V, mean that the title of HRH passes only to the children of a sovereign and their grandchildren through the male line, meaning Archie will only be given a title when his grandfather, Prince Charles, accedes to the throne.
The Queen can issue letters patent to change that on an individual basis but aides for Harry and Meghan briefed journalists at the time of his birth that they were very happy for him to be styled ‘Master Archie’ because they wanted him to have the same kind of freedoms as the prince’s cousins, Zara and Peter Phillips.
A source close to the Sussexes suggested yesterday the couple were so concerned about Archie’s security because of his mixed race heritage that they wanted him to become a prince so he would be afforded suitable security.
But insiders say there was never any doubt that the Queen’s great-grandson would be protected and although the Prince of Wales has made no secret of his desire to have a slimmed-down monarch, Harry and his family were always part of his plan.
There was no comment, however, on Meghan’s astonishing accusation that Kate had reduced her to tears ahead of the 2018 Royal Wedding over a bridesmaid dress fitting with her daughter, Princess Charlotte.
She even claimed her future sister-in-law ‘owned’ her mistake, apologised and bought her flowers, contrary to claims that it was she who had made Kate cry with her unrealistic demands.
‘She did what I would do if I hurt someone. Just take accountability for it,’ Meghan said.
The Duchess of Cambridge was yesterday seen driving, stony faced, near Kensington Palace as her office released a video of conducting a call to mark International Women’s Day by speaking to the youngest woman to row solo across an ocean.
The picture of strain was a stark contrast to a new image of Harry and Meghan, pregnant and cuddling Archie, in the garden of their home in California released by her friend, Misan Hariman, to also mark IWD.
The black and white portrait emerged on social media just hours after their interview – in which the couple revealed the second baby they were expecting was a girl – had aired.
A message read: ‘Welcome to the girldad club H!’
The Prime Minister refused yesterday to comment on the details of the Sussexes’ allegations – even when asked whether he believed members of the Royal Family might be racist.
But the White House backed the couple’s decision to speak out, a spokesman saying it took ‘courage’ for Meghan to open up about struggles with mental health problems.
And Labour called on the Palace to launch an investigation into the couple’s claims of racism.
Party leader Sir Keir Starmer said it was ‘really sad to see the family in turmoil like this’ and that the allegations made by the duchess must be taken seriously.
He added: ‘The issues that Meghan has raised of racism and mental health are really serious issues.
‘It is a reminder that too many people experience racism in 21st century Britain.
‘We have to take that very, very seriously.
‘Nobody, but nobody, should be prejudiced (against) because of the colour of their skin or because of their mental health issues.’
Labour education spokesman Kate Green went further, saying the duchess’s claims should be ‘fully investigated’ by the Palace.
But Tory MP Michael Fabricant accused Labour of trying to ‘politicise’ the row.
He told the Mail: ‘Labour are wrong to politicise this. They know full well that there will be inquiries going on.
‘They really do trying to be desperately insert themselves into the story to get attention.’
Mr Fabricant said: ‘Every family is dysfunctional one way or another.
‘The holder of every high position will have personal little secrets they want hidden. We are all human.