Meghan Markle and Misha Nonoo at the 12th annual CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Awards on November 2, 2015 in New York City. Picture: Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images

How Meghan uses Diana’s trick with media

Pregnant Meghan authorised five of her ‘girl squad’ to tell a US magazine the ‘truth’ in a move which could upset William

According to The Sun, it’s a tactic straight out of the Princess Diana PR handbook: Defy the stuffy palace bigwigs and flunkies, brief friends about the “truth” behind the headlines and take back control.

A very pregnant Meghan, Duchess of Sussex is taking back control when it comes to headlines, say royal experts. Picture: Trevor Adams/MatrixPictures.co.uk

A very pregnant Meghan, Duchess of Sussex is taking back control when it comes to headlines, say royal experts. Picture: Trevor Adams/MatrixPictures.co.ukSource:Matrix

This week Meghan, 37 — bitterly frustrated at being told not to react publicly to the spat with her rogue dad Thomas and being cast as “Duchess Difficult” — took matters into her own hands.

With tales of her staff leaving, 5am emails to assistants and feuds with sister-in-law Kate, pregnant Meghan authorised five of her “girl squad” to tell a US magazine the “truth”.

Suddenly here was the bombshell news that she had written a long letter of heartbreak to her father, accusing him of “victimising” her.

Meghan: Trevor Adams/matrixpictures.co.uk

Meghan: Trevor Adams/matrixpictures.co.ukSource:Matrix

This was Meghan — just like Diana in the 1980s and 1990s — bypassing Palace protocol and “setting the record straight”.

Ingrid Seward, Editor-in-Chief of Majesty magazine, said: “If there was something in the papers that Diana didn’t like, she’d take matters into her own hands.

“She’d speak to favoured journalists or friends such as Carolyn Bartholomew, who acted as the go-between with Andrew Morton on his book.

Diana, Princess of Wales, would take publicity matters into her own hands. Meghan Markle is taking a leaf out of the late Princess’s playbook. Picture: AFP

Diana, Princess of Wales, would take publicity matters into her own hands. Meghan Markle is taking a leaf out of the late Princess’s playbook. Picture: AFPSource:AFP

“She would tip off photographers for pictures that would make her look good, such as secret charity visits and the pictures on Dodi’s boat.”

Meghan, who attended the Endeavour Fund Awards for wounded veterans, also knows she can never be directly involved. So she got some of her gang to speak out for her.

An “LA friend” quoted is widely thought to be her pilates guru Heather Dorak. A “close confidante” is most likely Benita Litt, whose two daughters were royal bridesmaids.

The “former co-star” can be identified as Suits actress Sarah Rafferty, while the “former colleague” could be actress Janina Gavankar.

DUCHESS GOES ROGUE

But the most interesting quotes — tearing into Meghan’s dad and her half-siblings Thomas and Samantha — come from a “long-time friend”, most likely her Northwestern University pal Lindsay Jill Roth.

Meanwhile close pal and tennis star Serena Williams posted to Twitter a cryptic photo of herself with a cuppa, captioned: “Sips tea.”

Serena Williams posted a cryptic photo to Twitter suggesting that she was enjoying the royal gossip. Picture: Twitter

Serena Williams posted a cryptic photo to Twitter suggesting that she was enjoying the royal gossip. Picture: TwitterSource:Supplied

“Sipping the tea” is US slang for enjoying the gossip. The post was Serena saying: “I’m loving watching this play out.”

Meghan has a press team at Kensington Palace, who also work for Harry, William and Kate. She could have issued something though them — but left them blindsided instead.

MEGHAN ‘BYPASSES PALACE’

Diana was a renegade and used the press effectively. But it drove her team to distraction.

Princess Diana was adept at manipulating the press in PR matters, but it drove the palace to distraction. Picture: Supplied

Princess Diana was adept at manipulating the press in PR matters, but it drove the palace to distraction. Picture: SuppliedSource:Supplied

Meghan, as an actress, also knows how to court good publicity. A royal source said: “She thought, why didn’t her team deny reports and speak out for her? Why was the narrative of Kate versus Meghan allowed to take hold?

“The fallings-out were more with William and Harry. She and Harry think many of their team are kids.”

That is probably why Meghan has been trying to shut down negative stories herself — even via a magazine that had ‘Duchesses at War’ as a December cover.

But it has a large US audience and she wants the message out quickly.

However, as her press team know, the story has only brought the debacle with her dad back into the spotlight.

There’s no doubt Meghan is a breath of fresh air for the British monarchy.

But the mantra that has ensured the Queen rises above the ebb and flow of popular opinion is: “Never complain, never explain.”

Meghan now needs to take a (tea) leaf out of her book.

MEGHAN’S ‘GIRL SQUAD’

As a former actress, Meghan has an intensely loyal circle of close pals. Many live in America but she regularly calls, texts and Skypes them.

A number have spoken out to defend her “elegance, grace and philanthropy”. Here, we take a look at who they could be …

THE FITNESS GURU

Pilates instructor Heather Dorak lives in Los Angeles and is pregnant with her second child.

She met Meghan when the future royal attended one of her classes.

Meghan said: “She’s amazing — as an instructor, as a friend, she is inspiring in every way.” She added her workouts are “the best”.

THE FORMER CO-STAR

Sarah Rafferty, 46, starred as Donna Paulsen on the TV drama Suits.

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

 

 

 

A post shared by Meghan Markle 🔵 (@meghanmarkle_official) on

Meghan played paralegal Rachel Zane. Sarah is also mum to two daughters aged 11 and seven.

THE US ACTRESS

The glamorous Janina Gavankar, 38, bumped into Meghan in LA on acting jobs.

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

 

 

Quick thank you to glam queen @lydiafsellers for the 💄💇🏻 before I wash it off!

A post shared by Janina Gavankar (@janina) on

Meghan trusts her so much she authorised her to speak to media before the royal wedding last year.

THE BEST MATE

After a career as an entertainment lawyer, Benita Litt founded an ethical bag company and vitamins firm.

Former entertainment lawyer Benita Litt with Meghan Markle. Picture: Instagram

Former entertainment lawyer Benita Litt with Meghan Markle. Picture: InstagramSource:Supplied

She has joined fashion fan Meghan at a number of charity events.

THE SORORITY SISTER

Lindsay Jill Roth, 37, who is an author, met Meghan at Northwestern University.

She based a character on the Duchess-to-be in her 2015 novel What Pretty Girls Are Made Of.

THE MATCH MAKER

Fashion designer Misha Nonoo, 32, used to be married to Harry and Will’s mate Alexander Gilkes.

Meghan Markle and Misha Nonoo at the 12th annual CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Awards on November 2, 2015 in New York City. Picture: Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images

Meghan Markle and Misha Nonoo at the 12th annual CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund Awards on November 2, 2015 in New York City. Picture: Nicholas Hunt/Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images

She helped introduce Meghan to her royal husband-to-be.

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