Dutch edition: Publisher stops sales of “Endgame”: Book reveals names of royals who made racist comments

It's a title that was eagerly awaited: "Endgame" by Omid Scobie.

Dutch edition: Publisher stops sales of “Endgame”: Book reveals names of royals who made racist comments

It's a title that was eagerly awaited: "Endgame" by Omid Scobie. Three years after his work “Finding Freedom,” the British journalist has published another investigative book about the royal family. But just one day after it was published, it caused a scandal in the Netherlands. "Xander Publishers is forced to temporarily withdraw the book 'Eindstrijd' by Omid Scobie from sale. An error has occurred in the Dutch edition. A correction in the translation is being worked on," the publisher writes on its website.

Specifically, it's about a passage in which Scobie describes the discussions about the skin color of Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan's son Archie. In an interview with US talk show host Oprah Winfrey in spring 2021, Meghan said: "In the months that I was pregnant, there were concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he was born." Prince Harry added: "I won't reveal anything about this conversation. It was uncomfortable, I was a bit shocked." To date, the couple has not revealed which member of the royal family they are. Harry later only clarified that it was neither the Queen nor her husband Prince Philip.

In his book, Scobie now mentions an exchange of letters between Duchess Meghan and King Charles III after the Oprah interview. – then still Prince Charles – took place. The English edition of "Endgame" says: "But in the pages of these private letters, two identities were revealed." So Scobie claims there were even two people who expressed concerns about Archie's skin color, but doesn't mention names or positions. The laws in Great Britain would not allow the identities to be revealed, writes Scobie. But that's exactly what happened in the Dutch translation: there are specific names in the book.

One person who has already read the book is the Dutch journalist and royal expert Rick Evers. He said on TV show Good Morning Britain: "The book mentions the names of two senior members of the royal family. The first is very specific, the second is a bit vague if that person is really involved in the story. But "The first case is clear. Officially it is said that it is a translation error. There is debate about how these passages were worded in the book. I would say, how can you mistranslate a name?"

Author Omid Scobie sees no guilt in himself. "The book has been published in several languages. Unfortunately, I don't speak Dutch. But if there are translation errors, the publisher will correct them. I wrote the English version. There was no version of me in which names were mentioned," he said the Dutch television station RTL Boulevard.

Journalist Rick Evers, however, believes that Scobie wrote a manuscript in which he named the names. However, they were deleted from the final English version for legal reasons. Evers says he compared the English and Dutch versions of the book and found "that the English version is missing some passages."

The allegations that Harry and Meghan made in their conversation with Oprah Winfrey in 2021 caused a deep crisis in the royal family. During an appearance, Prince William said: "We are not a racist family." Buckingham Palace released a statement on behalf of the Queen after the interview. It said, among other things, that the issues raised, particularly the statement that there was racism in the royal family, were "worrying". They take the allegations very seriously, but want to discuss them privately. The New York Times reported that the family then agreed that Harry and Meghan would no longer address the issue in the future. Omid Scobie's book now gives it new fuel.

Quellen: Xander Uitgevers, BBC, The Guardian, The Telegraph, Daily Mail