Prince Harry Addresses Allegations Of Killing ’25 Taliban Fighters’ In New Book, Spare
Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex has addressed claims of killing 25 Taliban fighters while on duty in Afghanistan.
He described these allegations as a “dangerous lie”.
The prince has been criticised for discussing killings in Spare, with some military figures saying it was wrong to refer to the dead as “chess pieces”.
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But on US TV, Prince Harry accused the press of taking his words out of context and said the spin endangered his family.
He also defended his remarks, saying he had wanted to reduce veteran suicide.
Spare, which was published on Tuesday, has become the fastest-selling non-fiction book ever in the UK.
Some 400,000 copies of the memoir have been bought, despite many excerpts being leaked in the press ahead of its official release.
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In a wide-ranging interview with Stephen Colbert on The Late Show – the first conducted after details from the book were published – Harry suggested there had been attempts to undermine his book, spoke of his fractured relationship with his brother, and attacked the “bigoted” British press.
Harry said writing the book had been a “cathartic” experience and the “most vulnerable I have ever been in my life”, while also leaving him feeling stronger.
But he added: “The last few days have been hurtful and challenging, not being able to do anything about those leaks.”
In his condemnation of the media coverage, Harry claimed outlets had intentionally chosen to “strip away the context” of his account.
“Without a doubt, the most dangerous lie that they have told, is that I somehow boasted about the number of people I killed in Afghanistan,” he said.
If I heard anyone boasting about that kind of thing, I would be angry. But it’s a lie.
It’s really troubling and very disturbing that they can get away with it… My words are not dangerous – but the spin of my words are very dangerous to my family. That is a choice they’ve made.
He said he had wanted to be honest about his experience in Afghanistan, and to give veterans the space to share theirs “without any shame“.
“My whole goal and my attempt with sharing that detail is to reduce the number of [veteran] suicides,” he added.
Harry also claimed Buckingham Palace attempted to undermine the stories told in his memoir, assisted by the British press.