Guilty by Interview
Over the weekend BBC News Night aired a near-hour long interviewwith the Duke of York, Prince Andrew, regarding his involvement in the Jeffery Epstein scandal. In what is regarded as the third biggest crash in royal history, Andrew revealed that he really was that pompous, out-of-touch, creepy jetsetter tabloids long suspected him to be.
Among the Prince’s most unusual defences; ‘it was almost impossible for me to sweat’, ‘going to Pizza Express in Woking is an unusual thing for me to do, hence my vivid memory of it’, ‘it was a convenient place [the house of a convicted pedophile] to stay’, and ‘I am not one to, as it were, hug’.
If one watches the footage closely, they might observe Emily Maitlis, Prince Andrew’s interrogator, pinching herself as he replies to every question with the same disjointed waffle punctuated by cringe-inducing smiles and laughter. Prostituting children? Unbecoming. Is that you in the picture? Impossible, I always wear a suit in London.
While it is easy to laugh at the squirming royal, it remains true that these claims against him have never been corroborated, nor has any evidence, other than the now-infamous photo and Roberts’ testimony, been brought in support of them.
Though where sympathy might truly end for the Duke is when he refused to say that he regretted his friendship with Epstein, instead stating, like a true cynic, that he valued all the opportunities that he had enjoyed while moving in the same circle as a prolific pedophile. Just because he’s a pedo, doesn’t he mean he can’t throw an awesome party.
It is in light of this, several organisations have pulled their support from Prince Andrew’s initiatives.
Standard Chartered Bank and KPMG associates have just ended their association with the Prince’s Pitch@Palace scheme. Others, including AstraZeneca, Hult International Business School, and Outward Bound are said to be considering doing the same while the Universities of Huddersfield and London Metropolitan are considering sacking him from honorary positions entirely. It remains unclear whether universities are dissociating the Prince for his immorality, or because he thought this interview went well.
The dominos are likely to keep falling for Prince Andrew, and Buckingham Palace is reportedly in meltdown over the whole episode. What the future holds for the Duke after this is not clear, although his father quickly retired from public life after his very own car crash.