IN THE SEVENTH PART OF OUR SERIES ON CRIME AND MALPRACTICE AT THE DAILY MAIL AND MAIL ON SUNDAY, PRESS STANDARDS CAMPAIGNER PROFESSOR BRIAN CATHCART EXAMINES KEY DETAILS IN MEGHAN MARKLE’S ONGOING LEGAL ACTION AGAINST PUBLISHERS ASSOCIATED NEWSPAPERS, AND SAYS: THIS IS A SCANDAL ABOUT DISHONEST JOURNALISM…
IF YOU want to understand the Sussexes’ decision to step back from front-line royal duties, then the answers are contained in one remarkable legal document.
Acquired (perfectly lawfully) by Byline Investigates, it reveals the real background to these events – a background which today’s UK media reporting, for all its frenzied activity, is simply refusing to show.
The document comes from the preliminary exchanges in the Duchess’s legal case against the publishers of the Daily Mail and as you will see it describes nine news stories, all appearing in the Daily Mail, the Mail on Sunday, or MailOnline.
They give a flavour – just a flavour – of the press coverage the couple have endured, and of which they have now plainly had enough.
As you will read, this is not legitimate media scrutiny of members of the royal family; it is lying and bullying by a powerful press organisation.
Today, I am encouraging you to view this document first hand, unvarnished, and as the Duchess of Sussex’s lawyers themselves have framed it.
They are denying every one of these stories in the most forthright terms – yet despite having months to do so, the Mail group has made no attempt to publicly defend its journalism.
This amounts to a campaign of vilification, and these are just some of the news stories published, month after month, by a single newspaper group.
The Sun has been at least as vile over the past few years, while the Express, Times and Telegraph were happy to join in.
And they are still doing it now – witness the bitter attack on the couple by Piers Morgan in yesterday’s Daily Mail (a characteristic exercise in shamelessness, since it failed entirely to remind readers that the Mail group is fighting a legal action against the Duchess, for publishing a private letter she wrote to her father, and that Prince Harry is also suing the Mirror over hacking that took place at a time when Morgan was editor).
All the power of our corrupt national press is being turned on this couple now, doggedly flogging us the racist and misogynist myth of a ‘difficult’, mixed-race, American woman preying on a vulnerable prince.
The aim is clear – to break up the marriage.
Not one mainstream media outlet is prepared to present this affair as what it really is: a scandal about dishonest journalism.