PRINCE Charles continues to do all that he can to prove to the British people that he is not a suitable person to be Heir to the Throne. His decision, announced yesterday, to sue the The Mail on Sunday newspaper for printing extracts last weekend from a journal that he wrote eight years ago, demonstrates once more that his judgement is flawed. He is claiming that the publication of the journal infringes his copyright and is a breach of confidentiality. The journal, entitled “The Handover of Hong Kong or The Great Chinese Takeaway”, gives an account of the ceremonies in 1997 at which Prince Charles represented the Queen. His commentary on the event is gratuitously insulting to the Chinese who are described as “appalling old waxworks” and is also critical of the Blair government for its decision to axe the Royal Yacht. Apparently Prince Charles is in the habit of writing these journals (goodness knows what else there is to be revealed!) and circulates them to close friends and other people who may be interested in his views; inevitably, they often receive a wider readership. In other words, they are not confidential in any real meaning of the word. But the more important question is why Prince Charles feels it necessary to write and circulate such stuff; monarchs keep diaries whose contents may in time be made available to bona fide researchers, but that is all. Why does Prince Charles depart from this sensible and necessary precedent and then make matters worse by risking an embarrassing court case? Hopefully, the matter will not come to court but the damage to Prince Charles' reputation has already been done. There is a revealing comment in the published journal about Mr Blair's advisers, “none of whom will ever have experienced what they are taking decisions about”. They are not alone in that, Prince Charles.


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