Prince Harry Overlooked in Sandhurst Alumni Book, Sparks Controversy

The Sandhurst alumni book, titled “They Also Served: 200 People Who Trained At Sandhurst,” has raised eyebrows as Prince Harry finds himself conspicuously absent, while his brother, the Prince of Wales, pens the foreword.

Authored by Vaughan Kent-Payne, The Sandhurst alumni book explores the achievements of “exceptional” graduates who have achieved recognition beyond the Armed Forces.

Among the mentioned alumni are prominent figures like the Prince of Wales, Winston Churchill, and Tim Peake. However, Prince Harry receives only a brief mention in a passage related to his brother, stating, “His [William’s] status as a future king meant that he could not be deployed on operations like his younger brother, Harry.”

Former Royal Marine and double amputee Ben McBean, an inspiration for Prince Harry’s Invictus Games, criticized the omission, deeming it “a bit petty.” McBean highlighted Prince Harry’s significant contributions, including his service in Afghanistan, piloting, and the establishment of the Invictus Games. He suggested that the exclusion might be a result of the reported family rift, asserting that Prince Harry would likely have been included otherwise.

The controversy surrounding Prince Harry intensified after claims made in his memoir, “Spare,” where he stated that he killed 25 Taliban insurgents during his military service. Colonel Richard Kemp, a former commander of British forces in Afghanistan, speculated that the omission may stem from both the reported family tensions and Prince Harry’s comments on his tours in Afghanistan.

Colonel Kemp emphasized Prince Harry’s noteworthy status as a Sandhurst graduate due to his royal background. Despite efforts to undermine the Royal family in recent years, Prince Harry deployed to Afghanistan against senior-level opposition and significantly contributed to supporting wounded veterans through initiatives like the Invictus Games.

The executive director of The Sandhurst Trust, Vaughan Kent-Payne, defended the editorial choices, stating that the selection process for the book was challenging. He clarified that the trust is entirely separate from the Sandhurst Academy, and all proceeds from the book will benefit the trust.

A Sandhurst spokesman explained that “They Also Served” aims to showcase a diverse cross-section of more than 40,000 British and 5,500 international officers who trained at the academy since 1947, focusing on a breadth of accomplishments rather than just the most well-known individuals.