Saturday, 22nd April 2006
Let me fight or I quit, says Prince Harry
PRINCE Harry has threatened to quit the Army unless he is sent to the front line, it was reported today.
The Prince and his older brother, Prince William, have both previously made it clear they are determined to see active service with their units.
Harry, 21, was commissioned earlier this month as a Second Lieutenant in the Household Cavalry's Blues and Royals, the Army's oldest and most senior regiment.
The Blues and Royals have been deployed in almost every major Army operation of the past two decades, including the Falklands, both Gulf wars, Bosnia and Kosovo.
The Mail on Sunday reported that Harry told senior officers at Sandhurst before passing out on April 12: "If I am not allowed to join my unit in a war zone, I will hand in my uniform."
This poses serious problems for the advisers tasked with protecting William and Harry, the second and third in line to the throne, and those fighting alongside them.
A spokeswoman for Clarence House said: "Prince Harry is very clear that he is joining the Army, and the Household Cavalry in particular, to serve his country as an operational soldier."
But she added: "On occasion there may be some circumstances in which his presence could attract additional attention, which could lead to additional risk to those he commands or himself.
"In these instances it is a judgment call which would principally be made by his commanding officer."
Harry said in an interview to mark his 21st birthday last September: "The last thing I said was there's no way I'm going to put myself through Sandhurst and then sit on my arse back home while my boys are out fighting for their country.
"That may sound very patriotic, but it's true."
Earlier this month a senior Army figure said it was "eminently possible" Harry could be in a danger zone within 12 months.
Major General Sebastian Roberts remarked on the dangers involved: "The risks for all soldiers are the same. We all sign a blank cheque when we join the Army."
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