Why I tip my hat to Harry
Published 24/01/2013 | 08:00
As he returns from Afghanistan, Prince Harry - or Captain Wales as he is known by his comrades in arms - has given an interview in which he reveals he has shot Taliban fighters, loves the relative privacy and anonymity of being in the Army but has been lectured by his father about remembering his position in life (particularly with regard to disrobing in Las Vegas hotel corridors).
The interview is unlikely to damage his image much. Self-effacing and direct, Harry comes across as fun and personable. Those action-man pics and footage of him are unlikely to disappoint wannabe girlfriends either.
He reveals he isn't a fan of the media in general (not merely "the Press" as broadcast outlets like to put it.)
But back home, Harry's private life, whether he likes it or not, will be the focus of considerable attention, especially now that his brother and sister-in-law have settled into tranquil married life and impending parenthood.
Harry is the Royal's loose cannon - but a popular one who, despite his father's fears about inappropriate princely behaviour, manages to come across as more "real" than the rest of them.
He has his faults but, very obviously, his attributes, too. He has heart and fire.
Were his comments about shooting down the Taliban too gung-ho? Some will interpret his remarks about "taking a life to save a life" as glib. But when we send young men and women to fight in a war, that is what they do.
And not all of them come home like Harry, either. That grim reality is the other side of that set of action pics of the celebrity prince.
For that reason if nothing else, you have to admire Harry's courage.
You have to admire all their courage.