Last week, Prince Harry penned an emotional open letter about his decision to sue the Mail on Sunday (the sister paper of the Daily Mail) for publishing — and allegedly doctoring — a private message Meghan Markle sent to her estranged father. Now, Thomas Markle is going back to the British tabloid that started this whole saga to share why he chose to leak his daughter’s letter.
Thomas told the Mail that he received the five-page letter last year and “vowed” to keep it private. But after a friend of Meghan’s told People that the two had been in contact and Meghan had tried to make amends, Thomas felt compelled to tell his very different side of the story. “I had to defend myself,” he said. “The letter was presented in a way that vilified me and wasn’t true. It was presented as her reaching out and writing a loving letter in the hope of healing the rift, but the letter isn’t like that at all.”
In People’s story, Meghan’s friend claimed that Thomas ended his response to Meghan with a plea for a photo op. “She feels like, ‘That’s the opposite of what I’m saying. I’m telling you I don’t want to communicate through the media, and you’re asking me to communicate through the media,’” the friend said. According to Thomas, this was “a tragic misunderstanding,” and he had just hoped to show the public that they were working to repair their relationship.
In his open letter last week, Harry accused the Mail of bullying Meghan and breaching her privacy for years. He compared the attacks to those against his mother, Princess Diana, who was killed in a car accident as paparazzi chased her down for photos. “I’ve seen what happens when someone I love is commoditized to the point that they are no longer treated or seen as a real person. I lost my mother and now I watch my wife falling victim to the same powerful forces,” he wrote. Meghan's letter published by the Mail, he added, “purposely misled you by strategically omitting select paragraphs, specific sentences, and even singular words to mask the lies they had perpetuated for over a year.”
Ever since Meghan and Harry married in May 2018, tabloids have harped on her strained relationship with her father and half-siblings. The irony here, though, is that multiple sources have said Meghan and Thomas were close until around the time of the wedding, when he started sharing personal information about the Duke and Duchess with the press. He has also been accused of selling stories to tabloids, but in the wake of the lawsuit, the Mail claims Thomas received no payment for the leaked letter.
Is it possible that these two could ever reunite? Thomas said he still has hope. “I don’t recognize the person who wrote the letter but I still love my daughter,” he said. “All it would take is one phone call and most of this craziness would stop.” If that’s the case, maybe he should give his daughter a call — and stop talking to the Mail.