Always trust the New York Times to “both sides” every situation. The Times spent five-plus years talking to neo-Nazis in small-town diners, giving their stories the kind of care, time and platform the paper rarely extends to, like, normal people who are appalled by Nazis. Speaking of, the Times published a piece called “Paparazzi Speak on Meghan and Harry’s Car Chase.” Instead of going to Ohio’s finest Nazi diner, the Times sent a journalist to a red carpet to interview paparazzi, several of whom refused to talk to the Times unless they were getting paid. The crux of the NYT’s story is that “paparazzi are looking for a payday by any means necessary” and “those same paps question the validity of the Sussexes’ story because it’s not like paparazzi would do anything for a payday.” I sh-t you not. Instead of accurately quoting the Sussexes’ security people, the Times wanted to make everything hazy and vaguely suspicious. Some highlights:
Tina Brown questions the Sussexes’ story: In a text message, Tina Brown, the author of two books on the royals, said the whole story “sounds mildly preposterous.”
Harry’s London case: [Photographer] Mr. Wong noted that earlier on Tuesday, a lawyer for Prince Harry had appeared in court in London, challenging a government decision not to allow him to pay for police protection during visits home. The timing, Mr. Wong said, was awfully convenient.
Why didn’t the Sussexes’ security pull into a garage? Even a person who had previously worked with the royals on their public relations strategy said it strained logic that the couple’s driver had not simply pulled into a garage at one of the many hotels celebrities frequently use to ward off pursuing photographers.
The Sussexes’ spokesperson responded to the Times: In an interview with The Times on Friday, the representative for the couple, Ashley Hansen, said: “Respectfully, considering the duke’s family history, one would have to think nothing of the couple or anybody associated with them to believe this was any sort of P.R. stunt. Quite frankly, I think that’s abhorrent.”
The paparazzi lied to the Times: Moreover, claims by photographers that no one outside got shots of the couple leaving the event turned out to be false. “They were some of the most beautiful images of the evening,” Ms. Hansen said, who minutes later produced a few of them by text message.
[From The NY Times]
“A lawyer for Prince Harry had appeared in court in London, challenging a government decision not to allow him to pay for police protection during visits home. The timing, Mr. Wong said, was awfully convenient.” That’s… some convoluted logic. Harry’s legal action against the Home Office (and the Daily Mail, for misreporting the issue) has been going on for nearly two years. At the hearing last week, the Met Police argued (simultaneously) that Harry isn’t important enough to warrant police protection AND he’s such a high-value target that no police officer should have to risk their lives to protect him. For real. The paps are arguing that Harry set up this incident to “prove” that he deserves… to pay for his police security? That’s really what they’re arguing.
As for the larger gaslighting campaign… I’m starting to get the feeling that whatever was planned for last Tuesday went sideways and the chaos we’ve seen in the American and British media is some extremely messy cover-up. It’s like they’re disappointed that the Sussexes and their security actually foiled what they had planned? “Why didn’t you pull into a garage?” Why, so the Sussexes would be isolated and trapped underground? “Why didn’t you go in the front entrance, why didn’t you do this, why didn’t you do that?” It’s like the operation fell apart when the Sussexes didn’t do what was predicted and planned for.
Photos courtesy of Backgrid.