(February 15, 2023 / JNS) The Talmud, which generally holds an emissary (shaliach) to be a true embodiment of the sender, makes an exception when the mission is sinful. There is no shaliach when it comes to a dvar aveirah, it states. The sinner is accountable, irrespective of whether someone dispatched the person on the evil mission.
A philosophical kin of this concept is at the core of a controversy unfolding in London and the United States, as Prince William, per reports, wants neither his brother Prince Harry nor his sister-in-law Meghan Markle to attend the May 6 coronation of the princes’ father, King Charles III.
This follows Harry’s writing in his memoir, Spare, that William and his wife, Princess Catherine “Kate” Middleton, encouraged Harry to wear a Nazi uniform to a 2005 costume party, and laughed about it.
The prince and princess have thus far declined to comment on whether they actually encouraged Harry to don the hateful uniform, and if so, whether they regret it. Instead, they have relied on friends and surrogates, who remain anonymous, in telling the press that the two are “appalled” and “finding it hard to forgive.”
William’s office declined to comment for a story that asked point blank about the uniform.
One of his unnamed friends hedged in an interview with The Daily Beast.
“Whatever Harry wore to a fancy dress party could never possibly be William’s fault,” said the source. “There is plenty for William to not like in the book. But he found it particularly astonishing that Harry wanted to reopen this issue, and rather than to accept responsibility for it, to try and blame William and Catherine for it, when it was clearly no-one’s fault but his own.” (This source might be familiar with the Talmud.)
The anonymous friend added that William was shocked to realize that “Harry has been nurturing this grievance for almost two decades.” Harry has called wearing the uniform “one of the biggest mistakes of my life.”
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