Prince Harry defended gay soldier from hate attack during Army training exercise

prince-harry-army-gay-soldier-attack.jpgJames Wharton, a trooper in the British Army, has published a book titled "Out in the Army," which details his experience as an openly gay man in the armed forces. One story, which appeared over the weekend in the Daily Mail, tells of the time Prince Harry saved Wharton from an attack by fellow soldiers.

Harry was Wharton's tank commander in the Blues and Royals and one day during a a four-month training exercise in Canada in 2008, Wharton writes that six soldiers were going to "batter" him because he had hooked up with one of their fellow infantrymen.

The excerpt reads:

'Sir, I need to talk to you.'

'Why? What's up? Are you OK?'

Harry instantly looked concerned. I told him: 'I think I'm about to be murdered by the infantry.'

I climbed into the turret and talked Harry through exactly what had happened. He had a complete look of bewilderment on his face.

I didn't hold back: I told him everything that had gone on. I couldn't stop the tears from welling up in  my eyes.

He said: 'Right. I'm going to sort this s*** out once and for all.'

Harry climbed out of the tank and started having a go. I worried he was about to make the whole thing worse, but he wasn't holding back. Prince Harry was sticking up for me and putting a stop to the trouble. I had been on track for a battering and had been rescued.

He came back ten minutes later and told me the problem had  been 'sorted'.

He told me: 'I knew one of his officers and we cleared everything up. I also told those other lads to back the f*** off, too.'

Wharton later praises his entire experience working with Prince Harry while on the training exercise, writing:

Harry's strong leadership - far stronger than most of the officers I'd worked with before - had been decisive. I'd learned a hell of a lot from him: how to navigate best with a GPS, how to 'sneak' around hillsides without exposing the vehicle and, more than anything, how to command with real leadership. Without his motivation we'd not have achieved Top Gun status.

 I enjoyed every bit of the exercise with Harry. I appreciated his openness, the way he spoke with personality on almost anything, the way he almost stripped his royal title off himself every time he entered the turret next to me.

Most of all, I admired his kindness. I'll never forget the four weeks we worked together and the incredible conversations we shared. The experience lives on as the stand-out period of my decade in the military.

The Daily Mail article also includes praise for Prince Harry's actions regarding the gay soldier from Shadow Defence Secretary Jim Murphy, who says, "The whole country will applaud Prince Harry. Our Forces should reflect the modern-day Britain they fight so hard to defend."
Photo/Video credit: Getty Images
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