The dark truth behind Princess Diana’s famous BBC interview

In 2020, after years of whispers and protests regarding the alleged unethical behavior of Martin Bashirthe BBC instructed the former Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, the Honorable Lord Dyson, to conduct an official investigation. He wrote the Dyson report: This exhaustive 127-page investigative document describes how the journalist manipulated family spencer to induce him to participate in the interview of Panorama, as well as his subsequent attempts to cover up this manipulation. The BBC published its findings in 2021.

Here is what Lord Dyson discovered.

In 1995, Martin Bashir was a relatively junior BBC reporter. In fact, the network had first thought of other names to interview the princess in the context of her tumultuous marriage. In 1993, she first contacted the Princess’ private secretary Diana, Commander Patrick Jephsonto ask her if she would like to speak with the veteran journalist Sue Lawley. He declined the offer.

But Martin Bashir, intrigued by the stories surrounding the monarchy, was willing to go out of his way to gain access to it. First, as shown in the series, he had a graphic designer who was working freelance for the channel create a fake bank statement suggesting thatAlan Wallerthe security manager of the Earl Spencer (The brother of Diana), had received payments from the British press and suspicious offshore companies in exchange for disclosing information about the spencer family. Unaware of the real context, the designer complied. Early September, Martin Bashir then showed the fake papers to the Earl Spencer.

A little after, Martin Bashir showed the Earl a second set of even more damning bank statements. They asserted that commander Richard Aylardprivate secretary of the Prince Charlesand Commander Patrick Jephsonits counterpart on the side of Diana, were receiving secret payments from dubious sources in the Channel Islands. (Contrary to the statements of Allan Wallerwhose Martin Bashir himself as well as the graphic designer, ended up confirming that they were completely invented, Lord Dyson could find no concrete evidence other than that of patrick jephson and of Richard Aylard were also wrong. However, he considered it probable “that they were created by Mr Bashir and that the information it allegedly contained was fabricated by him”). The Earl asked the BBC to vouch for the credibility of Martin Bashir. She did.

Princess Diana was in the grip of an easily exploitable deep paranoia

Earl Spencer immediately alerted his sister to the reporter’s findings. In the Army, Lady Diana agree to be introduced to him. He then arranged a meeting between the journalist and the most famous woman in the world. “It was about preparing myself so that he could then get some Diana the interview he was always secretly looking for,” said the brother of Diana at Dyson about documents.

Lady Diana and Martin Bashir first met on September 19. Lord Dyson think that Martin Bashir tapped into Princess Diana’s deep paranoia: “Princess Diana had paranoid fears about various things, including that she was being spied on and that her life was in danger,” he wrote.Mr Bashir would have had little difficulty playing on her fears and paranoia.” One of her panics? That dark forces are trying to get rid of her or hurt her so they can declare her “unbalanced.” She’s particularly concerned that it’s done through a car accident, such as a pre-planned brake failure.(A notable scene from this season of The Crown touches on this deep anxiety). According to the notes of the meeting taken by Earl Spencer at the time, they discussed the possibility of his car and phone lines being tapped and senior police officers making money from the illegally gathered information. The Dyson report, which cites the notes of the Earl Spenceralso claims that they talked about the possibility that the royal family would pay various tabloid journalists, who would in turn publish negative articles on Diana.

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The dark truth behind Princess Diana’s famous BBC interview