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The most important conclusions from Prince Harry’s explosive memoir

Prince Harry of the United Kingdom has leveled a number of inflammatory accusations against members of his family in his new memoir, which details his break with the family and details several private exchanges between him and other senior royals. 

The book, titled “Spare”—a play on the Duke of Sussex’s status as the “spare heir” to the monarchy—has been made available to CNN. 

The autobiography, which is available worldwide on Tuesday, includes a long list of reproaches, complaints, and grudges from Harry’s time as a senior member of the royal family as well as information about his highly publicized breakup from the family in 2020. 

The claims made in the book, which the 38-year-old royal has promoted in a number of televised interviews, have not been addressed by either Kensington Palace or Buckingham Palace.

In light of “Spare,” we can infer the following: 

According to Harry, William punched him. 

Harry claims that during a dispute over Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, his older brother, Prince William, punched him and sent him to the ground. This is one of the most explosive claims. 

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William, the heir to the British throne, allegedly described Meghan as “difficult,””rude,” and “abrasive” during a conversation between the two siblings before the alleged altercation. 

William eventually grabbed Harry by the collar, ripped off his necklace, and “kicked him to the floor,” according to Harry. 

On the grounds of Kensington Palace in London, Harry and Meghan’s then-home, Nottingham Cottage, was where William first met them to talk about “‘the whole rolling catastrophe’ of their relationship and struggles with the press,” according to his version of events. 

At the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in Vimy, France, on April 9, 2017, Prince William and Prince Harry arrive. 

At the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in Vimy, France, on April 9, 2017, Prince William and Prince Harry arrive. 

Image by Jack Taylor via Getty 

Harry claims that William attacked him after he tried to calm the tense argument by giving his older brother water. 

He called me a different name before setting down the water and approaching me. Everything occurred so quickly. That quickly. I was knocked to the ground when he grabbed me by the collar, ripped off my necklace, and grabbed me again. My back was cut by the pieces of the dog’s bowl as I landed on it. When I finally got to my feet and told him to leave, I lay there for a moment in a daze. 

In the book, Harry claims that William pushed him to retaliate, but he declined. He claims that after departing, William later made a “remorseful” return and apologized. 

The duke elaborated on the altercation in an interview with Britain’s ITV, which aired on Sunday. He also recalled seeing a “red mist” grab hold of William. 

He continued, “He wanted me to hit him back, but I chose not to,” noting that “what was different here was the level of frustration. I talk about the red mist that I had for so many years, and I saw this red mist in him. 

King Charles’s pleading with his warring sons 

Harry remembers going back to the UK for the first time after stepping down as a senior royal in April 2021 in order to attend the funeral of the Queen’s husband, Prince Philip, early on in the book. 

For the first time since he and Meghan spoke to Oprah Winfrey for their shocking interview, the duke was back with his father, now King Charles III, and William at the solemn event. 

“Thus, despite the fact that I had flown back to my hometown only to attend Grandpa’s funeral, I had requested a private meeting with my father, my older brother Willy, and Willy to discuss the situation while I was there. To find a way out,” he writes in the book, which CNN has a copy of in advance. 

I attempted to present my perspective, Harry continues. I was not at my best. I was still anxious and trying to control my feelings while also trying to be succinct and clear. 

But, according to Harry, he found that his father and brother had “come ready for a fight.” According to the memoir, Charles begs his sons not to “make my final years a misery” in Harry’s retelling, which also suggests that tensions with William were still high. 

Furthermore, it was revealed in the passage that the brothers call one another Willy and Harold, respectively. 

In September of last year, after the Queen’s passing, William, Catherine, Harry, and Meghan last came together to greet mourners in front of Windsor Castle. 

In September of last year, after the Queen’s passing, William, Catherine, Harry, and Meghan last came together to greet mourners in front of Windsor Castle. 

Source: Chris Jackson/Getty Images 

In his memoir, Harry also alleges that Charles once made fun of the fact that he is actually Harry’s father. 

The prince cited the fact that his father “liked telling stories” and related an instance in which his father, Prince Charles, back in the day, made light of his mother Diana’s relationship with Major James Hewitt. 

Harry recalls his father making the following joke: “Who knows if I’m really the Prince of Wales? If I am even your father at all, who knows? Possibly, sweet boy, your real father lives in Broadmoor. 

Given the rumor that my actual father, Major James Hewitt, was a former lover of Mummy’s, Harry thought it was a “unfunny joke.”

In the now-famous BBC Panorama interview with journalist Martin Bashir, the former Princess of Wales acknowledged having a five-year relationship with Hewitt. Two years after the birth of the Duke of Sussex, in 1986, she claimed the relationship began. 

In addition to Major Hewitt’s fiery ginger hair, sadism was also a contributing factor in this rumor. The news that Prince Charles’ younger child wasn’t his own was a big hit with tabloid readers, according to Harry. My mother didn’t meet Major Hewitt until long after I was born, but it didn’t matter because the story was just too compelling to ignore. 

The King “kept them to himself,” Prince Harry continued, if he had any thoughts about Major Hewitt. 

The brothers advised their father against getting married to Camilla. 

Another anecdote from the autobiography describes Harry telling his father not to wed Camilla because he thought she would make a “wicked stepmother.” Camilla is currently the Queen Consort. 

“I remember thinking that she might be mean to me right before the tea. If only she had a wicked stepmother like all the ones in stories. She wasn’t, however. I did feel genuine gratitude for that, like Willy did,” he wrote. 

She was referred to as the “other woman” in the book by both William and Harry. 

William had “long-held suspicions” about his father’s extramarital relationship, which “confused and tormented him, and when those suspicions were confirmed he felt tremendous guilt for having done nothing, said nothing, earlier,” Harry writes. 

Before its official release date on January 6, Prince Harry’s book “Spare” can be seen in a Barcelona bookstore. 

Before its official release date on January 6, Prince Harry’s book “Spare” can be seen in a Barcelona bookstore. 

Zuncho Doce/Reuters 

Harry writes that the brothers first met Camilla formally on separate occasions when their father wanted “to be public about” his relationship with her. 

Harry explains that William didn’t say much other than to express his appreciation for Camilla, the Other Woman, for her efforts. In the book, he later compares meeting her to getting an injection and writes, “Close your eyes, over before you know it.”

Harry shared the number of Afghan victims he had claimed. 

In Afghanistan, Prince Harry claims to have killed 25 people while serving with the British army. He claims that during the heat of battle, he saw his victims more as “chess pieces” than as actual people. 

A 2007–2008 tour and a 2012–2013 tour were both completed by the prince in Afghanistan. 

Harry was able to state “exactly how many enemy combatants I’d killed” thanks to technological advancements in the “age of Apaches and laptops,” and he felt it was important to never downplay that number. 

“And here is my number: 25. There was nothing satisfying about that number for me. But it wasn’t a number that I felt ashamed to mention, either,” the author writes. 

In addition, Harry claims that he “didn’t think of those twenty-five as people. If you treat them as human beings, you cannot murder them. If you view people as individuals, you can’t really hurt them. The bad guys were taken off the chessboard before they could kill the good guys, like pieces on the board. I had received good training in how to “other-ize” them. I had some awareness of the drawbacks of this learned detachment. However, I also recognized it as a necessary component of being a soldier. 

The Taliban has reacted angrily to the comments, which have drawn criticism from some British security and military officials. 

to the Queen, his farewell 

When Harry’s grandmother, the late Queen Elizabeth II, passed away, many people questioned whether he would talk about that event in his life. He does admit that his father Charles was the one to call him in the beginning to inform him that the Queen’s health “had taken a turn” in September. 

Harry relates how he texted William right away to inquire about whether he and Kate were traveling by plane to Balmoral, as well as the time and method of travel, in his memoir. 

According to Harry, William did not respond. 

He claims that after that, Charles called him again and informed Harry that while his wife, Meghan, was not welcome at the Scottish home, he was. 

Harry claims that he replayed his last conversation with his grandmother while spending the majority of the flight to Scotland staring at the clouds. 

On September 9, 2022, in London, England, King Charles III observes floral tributes to the late Queen Elizabeth II outside Buckingham Palace. Mayfair, London’s Bruton Street was the site of Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor’s birth on April 21, 1926. After her father, King George VI, passed away on February 6, 1952, she married Prince Philip in 1947 and succeeded to the thrones of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth. King Charles III will be the new monarch after Queen Elizabeth II passed away at Balmoral Castle in Scotland on September 8, 2022. Chris Jackson/Getty Images provided the image. 

A year of ups and downs for the royal family 

I had a lengthy phone conversation four days prior. Many topics had been covered. Of course, her health. Harry recalls the unrest at Number 10. 

Harry claims that as the plane descended, Meghan texted him asking him to call her. He then checked the BBC website. 

Granny had vanished. Pa was King, the author writes. 

The moment he first saw the Queen’s body inside a Balmoral Castle room is another topic he discusses in detail. 

I went inside after bracing myself. I had never been in the room before, and it was dimly lit and unfamiliar. Uncertainly moving forward, I discovered her. I remained still and just stared. I couldn’t stop gazing. Even though it was challenging, I persisted because I was regretting not being able to see my mother at the very end. Years spent bemoaning the lack of evidence and delaying my grief due to it. I now considered: Evidence. Think twice before making a wish. 

Harry claims that he then said in a low voice to her, “I hope you’re happy, and I hope you’re with your late husband, Prince Philip,” before leaving. 

Kate’s “baby brain,” as Meghan put it, 

It is revealed in another section of the memoir that the Duchess of Sussex allegedly irritated the Princess of Wales by claiming the latter must have “baby brain” as a result of her hormones in the days following her delivery and in the months leading up to the royal wedding in 2018. 

Harry talks about a meeting with William and Kate in 2018 that took place at their home and was, in the duke’s words, an effort to put both couples’ differences behind them. 

According to rumors, Kate reportedly demanded Meghan apologize to her after she offended her. 

Pictured on April 17, 2022 in The Hague is Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan. 

Pictured on April 17, 2022 in The Hague is Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan. 


We’re not close enough for you to talk about my hormones, Kate allegedly told Meghan, according to the book. 

Harry continued, “Meghan claimed she spoke in that way to all her friends.”

In Harry’s account, the Prince of Wales called Meghan “rude,” pointed his finger at her, and said, “It’s not how we do things here in Britain.” Meghan allegedly responded, “Kindly take your finger out of my face,” to the Prince of Wales’s comments. 

“Meg said she’d never intentionally hurt Kate, and if she ever did, she asked Kate to please just let her know so it wouldn’t happen again,” Harry writes. 

‘We all hugged. … sort of 

Harry remembers numerous scandals from the news. 

The controversial incident of me going to a party in a Nazi costume in 2005 is also brought up in the autobiography. Harry claims that Prince William and his wife Catherine persuaded him to wear it, which is how he came to that decision. 

On the front page of the UK’s Sun newspaper in 2005, Harry could be seen attending a costume party while sporting a swastika armband on a German military jacket. 

Harry accepted responsibility for the incident at the time and apologized through the Clarence House Press Office, saying he was “very sorry if I caused any offense or embarrassment to anyone. I apologize because the outfit was a poor choice. 

The Duke of Sussex mentioned it as one of his “biggest mistakes” in the recent Netflix documentary “Harry and Meghan,” adding that he felt “so ashamed afterwards.”

In contrast to his previous public apologies, in which he claimed sole responsibility for the incident, Harry’s new assertion that his brother and sister-in-law were involved. 

In the new book, the Duke of Sussex revisits the occasion when he was considering which costume to wear and called Prince William and Catherine to get their advice, to which they allegedly told him to wear the Nazi uniform over a pilot costume. 

When Willy and Kate answered the phone, I questioned them. They claimed I was wearing a Nazi uniform,” claims Harry. I returned home after renting it along with a goofy mustache. 

William and Kate “howl” as Harry attempts to wear it. Better than Willy’s leotard-clad attire! The absurdity is way worse!”

The events that transpired after a photo of him wearing the costume was published in the media were described by him as a “firestorm, which I thought at times would engulf me.”

Furthermore, I believed that I deserved to be engulfed. During the ensuing weeks and months, there were times when I thought I might pass away from shame, he continues. 

“I was either a crypto Nazi or else a mental defective,” he claims, describing his judgment as “swift, harsh.” To face Willy, I turned. Although there wasn’t much to say, he was sympathetic. 

In his final statement, Harry states that “shame would never fade. Neither ought it to. 

His use of a racial slur to refer to a Pakistani fellow soldier in a video that surfaced in 2009 was also addressed. 

While passing the time in an airport, Harry recalled taking some video of himself and a few of his fellow cadets. 

When I got to my fellow cadet and good friend Ahmed Raza Kahn, a Pakistani, I said: “Ah, our little P*ki friend.””I panned the group, gave a running commentary on each lad.” Before claiming to not have known the word was offensive, Harry writes. 

For 60 minutes, prince Harry 


Before meeting Meghan Markle, I was likely prejudiced, says Prince Harry. 

Growing up, he says, he frequently heard people use that word without anyone reacting negatively or cringing, and he never thought they were being racist. “I also had no knowledge of implicit bias. I was twenty-one years old, living in isolation and luxury, and the only thing I could think of when I heard this word was that it sounded like an Australian. Harmless.” 

According to him, the video was intended to be used in a year-end video for a fellow cadet, but it was later passed around and “ultimately ended up in the hands of someone who sold it to the News of the World [newspaper],” he writes. 

When the video was made public, Harry recalls that his father’s office apologized on his behalf. Harry also wanted to issue a statement, but “courtiers advised against it” because it was “not the best strategy, sir.”

“Strategy didn’t concern me. The idea that I was a racist bothered me. I wanted to avoid coming across as racist,” he writes, claiming that he apologized to his friend directly and was accepted. 

“He said he was aware that I wasn’t racist. No big deal,” concludes Harry. Although it was. He made me feel even worse with his easy grace and forgiveness. 

Losing his virginity while using drugs as a teenager 

Harry, who now resides in California with Meghan and their two kids, also acknowledges using cocaine at the age of 17. 

Naturally, Harry replies. During this time, I was using cocaine. I had been offered a line at someone’s country home during a shooting weekend, and I had since completed a few more. 

It wasn’t much fun, he continued, and it didn’t make me particularly happy the way it seemed to make everyone else around me. 

The main objective was accomplished, but it did make me feel different. Sense. a. difference I was a very unhappy 17-year-old boy, ready to try almost anything to change the way things were, Harry continues. 

video thumbnail for the premiere of Prince Harry’s Apple TV show 

I would have used drugs if I had to: On the demands of living as a royal, Prince Harry 

In the past, Prince Harry has acknowledged abusing drugs as a young person. He was charged with underage drinking and marijuana use in 2002, when he was a 16-year-old schoolboy, according to a prior CNN report. His father decided to send him to Phoenix House UK for a day after learning that he had used marijuana and alcohol heavily when he was 16 years old. 

Harry also describes losing his virginity in another section of his autobiography, which he refers to as a “inglorious episode.”

The “older woman” who “liked horses quite a lot and treated me not unlike a young stallion,” according to Harry, is the one who helped him lose his virginity. 

The female character in the book is left unnamed. 

It happened in a grassy field behind a busy pub, which is just one of the many things about it that were incorrect, the author writes. 

Harry continues, “Clearly, somebody had seen us. 

His mother’s death has him seeking closure. 

In his memoir, Harry also says that he reenacted his late mother’s trip through the Paris tunnel, where she and two other people were killed in a fatal car accident. 

Diana passed away in 1997, when Harry was 12 years old. 

According to Harry, he received an invitation to the French capital and a driver so that he could watch the 2007 Rugby World Cup semifinal. He asked the driver if he was familiar with the Pont de l’Alma tunnel, the scene of Diana’s car accident on his first night in the city. 

The exact speed Mummy’s car is said to have been traveling at the time of the collision, according to police, is what he requested to drive at—65 miles per hour (104.6 kilometers per hour) 

“I’d always imagined the tunnel as some treacherous passageway, inherently dangerous, but it was just a short, simple, no-frills tunnel,” Harry says before adding that “there was no reason anyone should ever die inside it.”

BBC’s Prince Harry documentary 


They took pictures as Diana was dying, according to Prince Harry. 

A second time through the tunnel was requested by Harry’s driver, according to his writing. 

The idea had been awful. I had many bad ideas throughout my 23 years, but this one was particularly misguided. Despite what I had told myself, I didn’t actually want closure. I had secretly hoped that when Jamie Lowther Pinkerton, a former personal assistant to Princes Harry and William, handed me the police files, I would experience the same level of shock. Doubt. However, that was the night that all uncertainty vanished, according to Harry. 

I had imagined that, after a decade of excruciating pain, driving through the tunnel would put an end to it—or at least temporarily halt it. As opposed to that, it ushered in the beginning of Pain, Part Deux,” he continues. 

On July 1, 2021, the day before Princess Diana would have turned 60, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex of the United Kingdom and Prince William, Duke of Cambridge of the United Kingdom attend the unveiling of a statue honoring their mother. On Thursday, the day before Princess Diana would have turned 60, Princes William and Harry put their differences aside to unveil a new statue honoring her. Dominic Lipinski took this picture for POOL/AFP. (Image courtesy of D. Lipinski/Pool/AFP via Getty Images) 

Astonishing silence from the royal family 

The prince discusses his memories of meeting mourners and the guilt he experienced while walking outside Kensington Palace after his mother passed away in 1997 in a clip from “Harry: The Interview,” which was aired on ITV in the UK on Sunday. 

As a result of his mother’s passing, Harry claims to have shed a single tear at her funeral. 

Tom Bradby, the host, hears him say, “Everyone knows where they were and what they were doing the night my mother died.”

“I cried once, at the burial, and you know I go into detail about how strange it was and how actually there was some guilt that I felt, and I think William felt as well, by walking around the outside of Kensington Palace,” she said. 

As he shook the mourners’ hands, Harry described noticing tears on their hands. According to him, “there were 50,000 bouquets of flowers to our mother, and there we were shaking people’s hands, smiling.” I watched the videos and went over everything, you’re right. We were trembling as we stared at their wet hands, which were being used to wipe away their tears, which we couldn’t understand why they were wet.

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