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Diana and Meghan Markle Made the Same Shocking Claim About the Royals

Harry's mother and wife both "felt they contributed far more to the Royal family than was acknowledged."

There have been many explosive revelations that've come to light from excerpts of Finding Freedom, the upcoming tell-all that chronicles the events and frustrations that led to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's decision to leave the Royal family. And one highly emotional comment attributed to Meghan that's emerged is particularly stunning, in that we've read it before. The quote is shockingly similar to remarks made by Princess Diana when her crumbling marriage to Prince Charles made her feel like she was being marginalized by the Palace.

In the excerpt in question published in The Times of London, authors Omid Scobie and Carolyn Durand offer a glimpse into Meghan's state of mind before she and Harry departed the U.K. for Canada. "As Meghan tearfully told a friend in March: 'I gave up my entire life for this family. I was willing to do whatever it takes. But here we are. It's very sad,'" the 320-page biography, due out August 11, reads.

In 1992, after an intimate and embarrassing conversation between Charles and his then-mistress, Camilla Parker-Bowles, made headlines, the "Squidgygate" tapes of calls between Diana and James Gilbey were leaked to the media. Diana's exchange with Gilbey was tame by comparison, except for the princess's anguished words: "After all I've done for this ****ing family."

At the end of that year, which also included the publication of Andrew Morton's book, Diana: Her True Story, Buckingham Palace announced that Diana and Charles were officially separating.

"The parallels are undeniable," said one Palace insider. "Both the Princess of Wales and the Duchess of Sussex felt they contributed far more to the Royal family than was acknowledged. They both felt misunderstood and unprotected by the family and they both used tell-all books written while they were still senior working royals to tell their version of events."

Princess Diana, in Portsmouth, England, August 1991.
David Cooper / Alamy Stock Photo

Some insiders allege Scobie was handpicked by Harry and Meghan to write Finding Freedom because he has been highly sympathetic in his coverage. Scobie, who was one of only two journalists selected to cover Meghan's last official engagement, described how he "hugged" Meghan in an emotional farewell just hours before she left Britain for Canada. He has also spoken of his "one-on-one" discussions with Harry. He and Durand said they have spoken to more than 100 sources, including "close friends of Harry and Meghan's" as well as royal insiders and staffers, with every claim made in the book supported by "at least two sources."

A spokesperson for Harry and Meghan denies that the couple spoke to Scobie or Durand for Finding Freedom. On July 25, they released the following statement: "The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not interviewed and did not contribute to Finding Freedom. This book is based on the authors' own experiences as members of the royal press corps and their own independent reporting."

However, the promotional text for the hotly anticipated book promises "unknown details of Harry and Meghan's life together, dispelling the many rumors and misconceptions that plague the couple on both sides of the pond" through the authors' "unique access." The publisher's statement notes that the book was "written with the participation of those closest to the couple."

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Despite her denials at the time Diana: Her True Story was published in 1992, after Diana's death, Morton revealed the princess had sat for six interviews with an intermediary who then delivered the tapes of their conversation to Morton, who attributed some of the princess's comments to unnamed friends. Diana would read the draft and even made revisions to the text. (Some of Diana's closest friends did speak to Morton, as well.)

"Meghan and Harry are playing a dangerous game here," said my source. "This has all the echoes of Diana's war against the Windsors, even in the very words attributed to Meghan. The major difference is that while Diana was, in effect, banished from the family, the Queen and Prince Charles have been nothing but supportive of Meghan. Regardless of whether or not the claims in the book about Meghan's frustrations came directly from her or her friends, they have changed her relationship with the family forever." And for more on Meghan's life outside the Palace walls, check out The Powerful Messages Behind Meghan Markle's Post-Royal Wardrobe.

Diane Clehane is a New York-based journalist and author of Imagining Diana and Diana: The Secrets of Her Style.

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