Prince Harry has blamed Prince William and sister-in-law Kate Middleton for his notorious appearance at a costume party wearing a Nazi uniform in 2005.
The Duke of Sussex says in his new memoir – where he is expected to detail resigning from royal duties along with wife Meghan – they both thought it was funny.
Harry claims he was considering either the Nazi uniform or a pilot’s outfit to a ‘Native and Colonial’-themed event and called his brother and sister-in-law for their opinion.
‘I phoned Willy and Kate, asked what they thought. Nazi uniform, they said,’ Harry wrote, according to Page Six.
Prince Harry partially blamed both his brother Prince William and sister-in-law Kate Middleton for his infamous appearance at a costume party wearing a Nazi uniform
‘They both howled. Worse than Willy’s leotard outfit! Way more ridiculous! Which, again, was the point.’
The outfit became a huge scandal when Harry, then 20, was photographed wearing the Nazi regalia.
The story made global headlines after an image of then-20-year-old Harry in the uniform featured on the front page of The Sun newspaper.
The Duke of Sussex wore the Nazi uniform at a party thrown by Olympic show jumper Richard Meade.
Harry – seen here with William at an unveiling of a statue dedicated to their mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, in 2021 – asked Will and Kate for advice on whether to wear a Nazi uniform or a pilot uniform to the party
Harry said of William and Kate, seen here in 2020: ‘I phoned Willy and Kate, asked what they thought. Nazi uniform, they said,’ Harry wrote, according to Page Six . ‘They both howled. Worse than Willy’s leotard outfit! Way more ridiculous! Which, again, was the point.’
The theme of the event – held to mark the birthday of Mr Meade’s son Harry – was ‘native and colonial’.
Harry wore the desert uniform of General Erwin Rommel’s Afrika Korps.
Earlier in the evening he had worn an army-style jacket with a German flag on the arm.
Harry had arrived with his elder brother Prince William, who reportedly dressed in a skin-tight black leotard with a leopardskin pattern and a matching leopardskin tail and paws.
One guest told the Daily Mail afterwards: ‘If this was his idea of a joke then it went down like a lead balloon.’
Harry issued a groveling apology shortly after the image was published.
He said: ‘I am very sorry if I have caused any offence or embarrassment to anyone. It was a poor choice of costume and I apologise.’
Harry had previously addressed the incident in his new Netflix series that dressing as a Nazi was one of the ‘biggest mistakes’ of his life.
The Duke of Sussex expressed contrition for his 2005 gaffe, speaking in the third episode of his and his wife Meghan Markle‘s new Netflix show.
Harry expressed his regret and said ‘all I wanted to do was make it right.’
Harry (pictured in 2004) issued a grovelling apology shortly after the image was published. He said: ‘I am very sorry if I have caused any offence or embarrassment to anyone. It was a poor choice of costume and I apologise’
Prince Harry has said in his new Netflix series that dressing as a Nazi was one of the ‘biggest mistakes’ of his life
He said he met with the Chief Rabbi and also spoke to a Holocaust survivor as part of efforts to repair the damage done by the gaffe.
At the time, the Chief Rabbi was Jonathan Sacks, who passed away in 2020.
The Duke of Sussex said: ‘It was one of the biggest mistakes of my life.
‘I felt so ashamed afterwards.
‘All I wanted to do was make it right. I sat down and spoke to the Chief Rabbi in London, which had a profound impact on me.
‘I went to Berlin and spoke to a holocaust survivor.
‘I could have got on and ignored it and made the same mistakes over and over in my life, but I learnt from that.’
Spare tells Harry’s story with ‘raw, unflinching honesty’, according to Penguin Random House.
Publishing sources said arrangements for Harry’s ‘explosive’ memoir’s release were ultra-closely guarded and being managed in minute detail, with only a handful of senior executives aware of the exact details.
Deliveries to bookshops are being scheduled to be last-minute to avoid unauthorised copies being leaked. Guarded sites across the world have been secured to house copies of the book prior to distribution.
One likened the sophisticated security operation to the 2007 release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, when JK Rowling was determined her young fans would not have the experience spoilt by learning of the boy wizard’s fate before reading the seventh and final novel in the series.
An army of guards, satellite tracking systems and legal contracts were all deployed to protect the 10 million first copies of the new Harry Potter book. When the finished manuscript was taken by hand from London to New York, a lawyer for the American publisher sat on it during the flight.
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