Also, the story starts with a BBC reporter who isn’t very well known.
There was a young reporter at the BBC more than twenty years ago named Martin Bashir. His dream has always been to cover a big story and become famous in the press. Big news, on the other hand, is impossible to get, and even if it were, it would not be given to a small reporter like him.
So he started to plan a big event, and the target was Princess Diana, who was having a marriage problem at the time (Prince Charles and Princess Diana were already divorced). After all, the public is interested in even small news about the royal family.
Princess Diana isn’t easy to see, and Bashir is just starting out as a reporter. He doesn’t have any royal experience or strong connections that could help him find Diana. How can he interview her?
So Bashir went after Earl Spencer, the Princess’s only brother. The British know that Earl Spencer has been close with the Princess and her siblings since they were kids.
Earl Spencer’s assistant got a call from Bashir on August 24, 1995. He said, “We are not seeking an interview or information; we just need to want to have a 15-minute conversation with you.” After that, he sent a letter on BBC stationery saying, “I have been looking into how the media behave for the past three months and have found something that you might be interested in.”
In reality, Bashir is just lying; he hasn’t done any investigations with the media. Though, in his letter, he did give hints that a thorough investigation had found that the media was secretly spying on the Spencer family, including his sister Princess Diana.
Spencer’s assistant finally invited Bashir to have a “drink with him” at 6 p.m. in London on August 29, but Bashir didn’t want to do it.
It made Bashir very happy, and he thought it was a good idea. In order to keep Earl Spencer’s good graces and get close to Princess Diana, he told lies that Alan Waller, Earl Spencer’s former head of security, was hired by Murdoch’s News International and intelligence agencies to spy on the Spencer family from time to time.
But Bashir didn’t present any proof at that time because he didn’t have enough time to fake it. Instead, he lied and said he would bring the proof to Earl Spencer in a few days.
After two days, on August 31, at 11:30 a.m., Bashir met him again at Spencer’s country estate. At that time, Bashir showed Count Spencer a fake bank deposit certificate that showed a news outlet had sent money to a member of Count Spencer’s personal team.
It was clear that someone on his private team was betraying him by taking money from the media to spy on the Spencer family in order to hurt Diana later.
After that, the investigation found that right before the second meeting with Earl Spencer, he quickly went up to his former graphic designer coworker Wiesler and asked him to do a bank statement for him. At that time, Wiesler thought that Bashir had seen the original bank statement and agreed to do him a favor. He didn’t expect that Bashir would pull off a fake plan, though.
After getting the fake bank statement, he told Earl Spencer that Waller, who used to be his head of security at News International, was paid about £4,000 a quarter by that company and £6,500 a year by Penfolds Consultants, another intelligence company. Penfolds Consultants, the other intelligence firm, also gave Waller 6,500 pounds.
The thing that really got Earl Spencer interested, though, was another lie from Bashir: that Richard Ellard, Prince Charles’ private secretary, was planning to k*ill Diana. Bashir said that a conversation between Ellard and journalist Jonathan Dimbleby had been secretly recorded. In the recording, it was said, “We’re down to the wire.” “Let’s Put Down the Wagon.” This was a reference to the fact that Princess Diana and Prince Charles were getting a divorce.
Earl of Spencer at the time was shocked, but he didn’t believe everything that was said. He called Steve Hewlett, who is in charge of The Broadsider. Spencer did not tell Hewlett what Bashir said, but he did ask Hewlett if he could trust Bashir. Spencer said that Hewlett told him Bashir was “one of the best reporters I’ve ever had.”
Bashir and Earl Spencer met again on September 14. It was said that Diana’s personal secretary, Patrick Jefferson, was working with Ellard, the prince’s secretary. Bashir added to this lie. Bashir showed a folded A4-sized piece of paper that showed the intelligence services paid Elad and Jefferson a lot of money to keep an eye on where Princess Diana was.
Bashir also wrote on the note, “Jefferson was Elad’s good friend and did business with him until 1992.” He wasn’t in charge of running an investment company that Ellard was in charge of. Jefferson was involved because he wanted to make money, and he quit in 1992.
Diana had been worried about her situation because of problems in her marriage, but this lie was the last straw that broke her. She now knew that she had a traitor on her team who had been spying on her. Her faith in the royal family finally broke down completely.
Spencer met Diana and Bashir for the first time on September 19, 1995. Bashir was finally getting nearer to his objective.
Around 30 accusations were made by Bashir at that meeting on September 19. One was that Diana’s secretary, Jefferson, was involved in a plot: “Jefferson – Danger: Money. left offshore accounts in March 1994.”
Spencer remembered many years later that he was still very skeptical after that meeting. He had told his sister that Bashir’s story didn’t seem very likely, and he planned to apologize to her for the false alarm if there wasn’t one. But Diana told Spencer not to worry.
Diana, on the other hand, met Bashir many more times after that first meeting. By the end of the summer of 1995, she really wanted to do a TV interview.
Friends of Princess Diana noticed a big change in her on November 5, when they were getting ready for the trip. Diana stopped believing in them, even Jefferson. “From Martin Bashir’s point of view, I was the obstacle that had to be removed,” Jefferson remarked, “because if I had advised her not to do the interview, she would certainly have felt that I was up to no good and would not have taken my advice.”
Another person who knew Diana and said that there was something wrong in the middle was Rosa Monckton. However, no one could do anything about it.
Lord Mishkin, Diana’s lawyer, also said that Diana called him the day after she made it clear that she was ready to be interviewed and told him about a bunch of crazy plots that she said were aimed at her. Diana just said that the sources were “reliable” when asked where she got the information.
The show “Wide Angle Mirror” on BBC Radio 1 played “Interview with HRH The Princess of Wales” on Monday, November 20, 1995.
Such was the case with this well-known interview from the 20th century. Princess Diana thought that the Queen had decided that the royal family was going to k*ill her and her family. She felt very alone and in danger, and knew that the only way to stop the plot was to tell everyone about it before it happened.
She famously said, “There are three people in this marriage, it’s too crowded,” in this interview.
She also said, “My husband, Prince Charles, and the gang behind him are against me. His foreign propaganda team lies about me on purpose. Prince Charles is not fit to be king,” and she admitted of having an affair.
Over 20 million people watched the live broadcast that year, making it the year’s most-searched-for event. The Queen then wrote to Charles and Camilla, telling them to quickly get a divorce so they wouldn’t hurt the reputation of the royal family.
This interview, like a depth charge, caused Diana and the British royal family to break up. It also made the British people very angry, and they almost overthrew the constitutional monarchy. After being persuaded to reveal too much personal and royal privacy, Diana also lost her royal protection. The royal family pulled all of their security staff, and the media around the world became even more eager to pursue Diana despite her wealth.
As they ran away from the press in 1997, Princess Diana and her Egyptian boyfriend, Dodi Fayez, died in a car accident in Paris’s Pont d’Alma tunnel. They were both 36 years old.
For more than 20 years after her de*ath, a lot of people thought that the royal family kil*led Diana. Who would have thought that a journalist’s plot would be the only reason this would happen?
Even though the interview caused Diana and the royal family a lot of pain, Bashir was able to get an interview with Diana of his own accord. He became a big star right away and is now one of the most famous reporters in the world. He has won many awards for his work. He was the big winner in the fight for Diana’s chat rights.
BBC officials praised Bashir for “the greatest interview of our time,” which would change how they cover the royal family.
Soon after, Spencer, Diana’s brother, woke up and realized that he and his sister had been lied to by the BBC. He started to demand payment from them.
The year after Princess Diana’s interview, in 1996, Earl Spencer blamed the BBC and asked for a full investigation, but the BBC said there was none.
Last year, Earl Spencer made the same accusation, and the BBC tried to hide it again by saying that evidence was missing and that Bashir had not done anything wrong.
Because the British royal family put pressure on them, they had to let a third party do an independent investigation. It was amazing what the investigation found.
All of the evidence, even bank documents, was fake, and Bashir, who used to work as a BBC reporter, broke the rules by lying to get an interview with Princess Diana.
The BBC’s president, John Burt, said “the BBC had harbored a fraudulent Wide Angle Mirror reporter who had crafted a detailed but completely false narrative about his dealings with Spencer and Princess Diana.”That was a terrible stain on BBC News, and it’s too bad it took 25 years for the truth to come out. As president at the time, I’m very sorry to Earl Spencer and everyone else who was affected.
In a strange twist, Bashir stayed with the BBC until 1998, when he quit to work for British Independent Television. Bashir was hired again by the BBC in 2016 as a religious affairs reporter. After the results were released, he quit his job as the BBC’s religion affairs editor, citing his health. It turned out that Bashir had contracted Covid-19 earlier and had serious complications, as well as a heart bypass surgery.
But Bashir’s trick to get Diana to agree to an interview is not the only one.
? In the end, he used his fame as a journalist to get permission to make a documentary about Michael Jackson. After that, different methods were used to get Michael Jackson into trouble with scandals like pedophilia and bleaching his skin.