It also must come as a bit of a relief to finally let the public know where he stands when it comes to his uncle. When asked about Prince Andrew—who is currently neck-deep in allegations of sexual exploitation related to his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein—Harry does not mince words. Not only does he make zero attempt to defend Andrew, he also gets in a dig at the relatives he perceives as more concerned about protecting their ranks than looking out for the welfare of the public.
“Whatever [Andrew] has done or hasn’t done, is completely separate from me and my wife. We operate in a way of inclusivity and we are focusing on community. And so we are completely separate from the majority of my family.”
The most controversial part of the recording concerns Donald Trump and the current administration's energy policies. Whether you find Harry’s comments about Trump atrocious or a triumph will depend entirely on your political leanings, but either way, one gets the sense that Harry enjoyed getting this off his chest.
“I think the mere fact that Donald Trump is pushing the coal industry so big in America, he has blood on his hands. Because the effect that that has on island nations far, far away... Again, out of sight, out of mind. We’ve visited those places and I’m sure you have as well and people’s lives have been completely destroyed. People are dying every single month by some form of natural disaster that has been created from this huge change in our climate.”
Regardless of the controversy that is now swirling around the prince, Harry’s conversation certainly pales in comparison with what his parents, Diana and Prince Charles were previously caught saying over the phone in secret recordings.
In a conversation between Diana and her friend James Gilbey that leaked in 1992, Gilbey affectionately called her “Squidgy” or “Squidge” no less than 53 times, and the Princess said of her then-husband: “He makes my life real torture.” A 1989 conversation Charles had with his then-mistress Camilla Parker Bowles was even worse, causing such a furor when it leaked years after the fact that it has taken the prince decades to recover. (During the call, Charles memorably told Camilla: “I’ll just live inside your trousers or something. It would be much easier!”)
As demonstrated by Harry and Meghan’s recent move to Canada, this is not a couple interested in being trapped within the bounds of British royal protocol. And for Harry, adhering to those standards of public decorum and political neutrality for his entire life must have been inordinately stifling. Harry himself indicates during the recording that he is looking forward to having a louder, more honest voice moving forward.