One of the last joint appearances: The current King Charles, Prince William, Princess Catherine, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan in March 2020 at Westminster Abbey.
Photo: Phil Harris / dpa
The new book by monarchy critic Omid Scobie about the royal family was eagerly awaited in Great Britain – one day after its publication, »Endgame« is now causing a lot of excitement because it has been withdrawn from circulation in the Netherlands.
Unlike the British version, the Dutch version mentions the name of the Windsor family member whom Prince Harry and his wife Meghan accused of racism a few years ago: The relative who had speculated about the skin color of one of the couple's children is said to be the current British King Charles III.
In a television interview Oprah Winfrey had with the Sussexes in the spring of 2021, Meghan had reported racist statements regarding her firstborn son Archie. Before the birth of the now four-year-old, a family member wondered "how dark his skin would be after his birth." The couple did not want to reveal who wrote this sentence. Prince Harry even cashed in on the allegations in the course of his biography »Spare«, published at the beginning of 2023. His family is not racist, the prince said, and they have never made these accusations.
The Dutch version of Scobie's book »Eindstrijd« now provides a concrete name. On X, photos from page 128 circulate, according to which Archie's grandfather Charles is said to have been the one who speculated about the color of his grandson's skin.
This is confirmed by letters between the King and Duchess Meghan. The text reads: "But in these private letters, the identity was revealed and confirmed: Charles. The king, sources say, wanted to respond to Meghan and make it clear that he had no ill intentions or prejudices when the two had spoken about his future grandson.
The name is not to be found in the English version, and the sale of the Dutch edition was apparently stopped immediately. The publisher in charge, Xander, cites an error. The website states: "Xander Publishers is forced to temporarily withdraw the book Eindstrijd by Omid Scobie from sale. An error has occurred in the Dutch edition. We are working on a correction in the translation."
Scobie is considered a close friend of Duchess Meghan and Prince Harry. For a long time, he has acted as an unofficial mouthpiece for the Sussexes, who broke away from the royal family in 2020. On X, formerly Twitter, he often uses exclusive information to counter rumors about the couple. Some of this information is said to come from the Sussexes themselves. When Scobie published his first tell-all book about the royals, »Finding Freedom«, in August 2020 – based on many statements from anonymous sources – he was even accused of being cooperating with Harry and Meghan. Scobie vehemently denied this, and the couple also distanced themselves from the book.
»Endgame« reopens the racism debate
With »Endgame«, which was released on November 28, similar voices are now being heard. Harry and Meghan wanted to rehabilitate themselves with the help of the book and attack the relatives in Buckingham Palace again, according to the speculations. Evidence of this is also sought in the pre-published parts. The social networks are overflowing with analyses from both camps.
Now the focus is on the passages that deal with the racism allegations against the royals. If Scobie is to be believed, not just one member of the royal household made racist remarks, but two. He does not name names.
A blunder – or is it a calculation?
How Charles' name made it into the Dutch text is something no one can officially explain. Author Scobie also points out a translation error in the talk show "RTL Boulevard". He had only written and revised the English version, and no name had ever appeared in it. "But if there are translation errors, I'm sure the publishers will have it under control."
Journalist and nobility expert Rick Evers, who published the photos of the passage at X, has his doubts about this explanation. In an interview with "Good Morning Britain" on Tuesday, he asked how a name could be mistranslated. Other British royal reporters are also discussing this question in detail on their social media channels. Harry and Meghan have not yet commented on this.
And Buckingham Palace is also silent.