“Bin Laden connection”, a new scandal overruns Prince Charles

“Bin Laden connection”, a new scandal overruns Prince Charles

by Luigi Ippolito

The Sunday Times reveals that the heir to the British throne has accepted £1m for his foundation from two of Osama’s half brothers. The news comes a month after the revelation of the million euros received by the former Prime Minister of Qatar

FROM OUR CORRESPONDENT
LONDON – The bin Laden family’s money in Prince Charles’ coffers: it’s the latest, embarrassing scandal surrounding the future British sovereign that casts another shadow over the verdict of Elizabeth’s heir to the throne.

The Sunday Times revealed that in 2013 Carlo received £1million from the two half-brothers of Osama, the terrorist responsible for the 9/11 attacks: money intended for the coffers of the Prince’s charity. Working personally to facilitate funding, Carlo met Bakr Bin Laden, the family patriarch, in London just two years after Osama was killed by US special forces in Afghanistan.

According to the British newspaper, several of the prince’s advisers urged him to return the money, fearing the donation would cause outrage if it became known to the public. But Carlo would have replied that he was too embarrassed to return the money to the bin Ladens: and the discussions in the palace with his staff ended in mutual shouting.

Royal sources have denied this last part of the reconstruction: On the other hand, bin Laden’s half-brothers were never involved in terrorist activities. But, as one of Carlos’ advisors would have said, “nothing good will come of this for anyone” from this story.

The British heir to the throne would have been introduced to Bakr Bin Laden by a Saudi prince in June 2001: and in October of that year, just four weeks after the attack on the Twin Towers, Charles would have invited Highgrove, Osama’s half-brother, to dinner at his estate to discuss the discuss Islamic beliefs (the prince is actually patron of the Center for Islamic Studies in Oxford, where the bin Laden family sponsors a study program).

But this “Bin Laden connection” is only the last link in a chain of scandals surrounding Carlo and the financing of his foundations. Last month, The Sunday Times also revealed that the prince had accepted a briefcase from the former Prime Minister of Qatar containing a million euros in cash: the sum was broken up into €500 notes, also known as “bin Laden” because they are often used in terrorist financing operations and money laundering. And last year, it emerged that Charles honored a Saudi businessman in a private ceremony at Buckingham Palace in exchange for a donation to his foundation.

These revelations come at a particularly delicate time for the monarchy: the reign of Elizabeth, now 96, is coming to an end for obvious reasons of age, and Charles is preparing to inherit the crown. But stain after stain seems to stain the prince’s mantle: and it’s no mystery to anyone that Carlo doesn’t enjoy the same popularity as his mother, being vastly outclassed in public opinion even by William and Kate.

The suggestion of a “generational leap” is nonetheless absurd because it would undermine the dynastic principle on which the monarchy is founded: And then we have a king whose wisdom is already often questioned by his controversial decisions and whose popularity is rapidly increasing affected by the revelations in the newspapers. Considering that the “bomb” from Harry’s memorial will arrive in a few months, the British monarchy is in a far from enviable position. And swearing by its long-term survival isn’t so natural anymore.

July 31, 2022 (Change July 31, 2022 | 18:56)