Tag: Royal Families

Woman Is Sentenced to 43 Years for Criticizing Thai Monarchy

BANGKOK — The onetime civil servant’s crime was to share audio clips on social media that were deemed critical of Thailand’s monarchy. The sentence, handed down on Tuesday by a criminal court in Bangkok, was more than 43 years in prison. It was the longest sentence yet for violating Thailand’s notoriously tough lèse-majesté law, which […]

Read More

My Father Spoke About Reforms. Saudi Arabia Is Slowly Killing Him.

In 2015, after King Salman succeeded King Abdullah, my father wanted to remind the king of his promise of reforms in Saudi Arabia. While appearing on Saudi national television, my father recounted how Crown Prince Salman had told him that political reforms and rights which my father long championed would be at the top of […]

Read More

New York Has a Cameo in ‘The Crown.’ Here’s What Really Happened.

Long shot of the Concorde landing at Kennedy International Airport. Princess Diana gets out of the plane to cheering throngs and heads to a glittering black-tie reception. Theather Huggins remembers what she was doing that same winter night in 1989. Working at a homeless shelter and just a few months out of homelessness herself, she […]

Read More

Spain’s Juan Carlos Makes a Big Tax Payment Amid New Financial Probe

MADRID — King Juan Carlos, Spain’s former monarch, has paid about $820,000 in back taxes, his lawyer said on Wednesday, amid an investigation by prosecutors into whether he and other members of the royal family used bank accounts in other people’s names to hide assets from the tax authorities The king’s lawyer, Javier Sánchez-Junco Mans, […]

Read More

A King Above and Beyond Politics

King Maha Vajiralongkorn, after just a few years on the throne, seems to have inherited his father’s practice of overriding formal limits on royal power, but not his spiritual aura, nor his ways. King Bhumibol usually pursued his political objectives by acting at a slight remove, typically through the monarchy’s vast influence network, such as […]

Read More

For Princess Mako of Japan, Official Wedding May Be Distant Prospect

When Princess Mako of Japan became engaged to her college boyfriend in 2017, many Japanese hoped for a fairy-tale wedding for the couple. But three years later, the prospects of the eldest daughter of Crown Prince Akishino and her beau, Kei Komuro, a commoner and aspiring lawyer, living happily ever after look, well, complicated. In […]

Read More

Covering ‘The Crown’ on Both Sides of the Atlantic

Times Insider explains who we are and what we do, and delivers behind-the-scenes insights into how our journalism comes together. Once again, viewers on both sides of the Atlantic are riveted by royals. Since the fourth season of “The Crown,” the opulent Netflix series about the life and times of Queen Elizabeth II, dropped on […]

Read More

Royal Watchers Wonder: Do the Royals Watch ‘The Crown’?

If there were a TV show that portrayed your family as a clueless bunch of snobs and philanderers who helped drive a mentally fragile young princess to despair, would you watch it? “Frankly, think about it,” said Valentine Low, who writes about royal affairs for The Times of London. (Yes, we’re talking about “The Crown” […]

Read More

‘The Crown’ Stokes an Uproar Over Fact vs. Entertainment

LONDON — On a Saturday night in July 1986, a band of bureaucrats in raincoats — one contingent from Buckingham Palace, the other from 10 Downing Street — converged on a newsstand in a train station to snap up The Sunday Times, fresh off the presses with a bombshell headline: “Queen dismayed by ‘uncaring’ Thatcher.” […]

Read More

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, Shares Her Miscarriage Grief

LONDON — Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, revealed in a deeply personal essay in the New York Times Opinion section on Wednesday that she had miscarried her second child with Prince Harry in July, bringing light to an experience shared by many grieving families who often suffer in silence. The steep challenges of 2020 — […]

Read More

Amid Thailand’s Protests, a Feared Tool to Protect the Monarchy Returns

BANGKOK — The number 112 strikes fear in Thailand. It refers to Section 112 of the country’s criminal code, which makes insulting or defaming the king and his close kin an offense punishable by three to 15 years in prison. On Tuesday night, a leader of the protest movement that is calling for changes to […]

Read More

For the African Women Who Love Diana, ‘The Crown’ Feels Personal

This article contains spoilers for Season 4 of “The Crown.” The latest season of “The Crown” took Aulbright Nyih on an emotional roller coaster. Initially thrilled to see Diana, Princess of Wales, onscreen, by the third episode she was reduced to tears by the portrayal of Diana’s bulimia. Soon Ms. Nyih was cursing Prince Charles, […]

Read More

‘Now, We Fight Face to Face’: Thailand’s Protests Shatter Taboos

BANGKOK — In unison, antigovernment protesters on Wednesday called the King of Thailand a giant monitor lizard, one of the worst things that can be said of anyone in Thai, and spray-painted bus stops and pavement in the capital’s central business district with graffiti describing his sexual activity. The insults demonstrated the increased daring of […]

Read More

‘The Crown’ Season 4: What to Watch and Read About Diana

LONDON — The shy daughter of an ancient aristocratic family. The pretty nursery-school attendant engaged to the Prince of Wales. The glamorous, philanthropic beauty. The insecure, needy bulimic. The wonderful mother. The manipulative schemer. The victim of a neglectful, unfaithful husband. The self-empowered survivor. The tragic heroine whose shocking death, at 36, sent Britain into […]

Read More

‘The Crown’ Season 4: What Actually Happened and How It Was Covered

The fourth season of Netflix’s royal show “The Crown” is dense with rivalry, intrigue and — this being the era of Diana, Princess of Wales — hair spray. Early in the season, we see a teenage Diana Spencer (Emma Corrin) being courted by Prince Charles (Josh O’Connor), and the 10 episodes take us through the […]

Read More

Margaret Thatcher and Class Struggles in “The Crown” Season 4

This article contains spoilers for Season 4 of “The Crown.” LONDON — Imagine you are invited to a black-tie dinner with the queen of England and the extended royal family at Balmoral Castle in Scotland, and it’s extremely important that you make a good impression. You’re asked to meet for drinks at 6 p.m. Do […]

Read More

‘The Crown’ Has Had Its Scandals, but There’s Nothing Like Diana

When we first glimpse her, minutes into Season 4 of “The Crown,” Lady Diana Spencer is dressed as a tree and hiding behind a plant, the picture of long-legged innocence in a foliage-festooned leotard. “Sorry, I’m not here,” she says coyly to Prince Charles, the highly eligible heir to the British throne, who has arrived […]

Read More

BBC Orders Inquiry Into Diana Interview After Claim Princess Was Misled

LONDON — The extraordinarily candid interview with Diana, Princess of Wales, in 1995 — in which she spoke of her “crowded” marriage to Prince Charles, admitted an affair of her own and told how in her despair she suffered from “rampant bulimia” — rocked England. Hailed by British journalists at the time as “the scoop […]

Read More

The Sovereigns of Thailand and the Skies

Last Thursday, a transgender protester wearing the traditional garb of a queen strutted down a red carpet in a street of central Bangkok. Another protester dressed like a court page — with sneakers — followed her, holding a red umbrella aloft in the style of a royal parasol. A crowd sat on the ground, prostrate, […]

Read More

Almost Like Clockwork, Talk of a Military Coup Follows Thai Protests

BANGKOK — There are certain constants in Thailand: the drenching monsoons, the grand openings of new shopping malls and the rumors that the Royal Thai Armed Forces are plotting another coup. For weeks now, student-led protesters across Thailand have taken to the streets every few days, calling for a new constitution with authority over the […]

Read More

Talk of a Military Coup Follows Protests in Thailand

BANGKOK — There are certain constants in Thailand: the drenching monsoons, the grand openings of new shopping malls and the rumors that the Royal Thai Armed Forces are plotting another coup. For weeks now, student-led protesters across Thailand have taken to the streets every few days, calling for a new constitution with authority over the […]

Read More

Bangkok Is Engulfed by Protests. What’s Driving Them?

BANGKOK — Protests in Thailand that began as a student-led revolt against the military’s influence on the classroom have ballooned to encompass a sweeping range of issues at the heart of the country’s deep-rooted social and economic disparities. The growing crowds of demonstrators who have been assembling for weeks at peaceful protests across the country […]

Read More

Thailand’s Leader Offers End to Crackdown on Pro-Democracy Protesters

BANGKOK — In a conciliatory speech Wednesday, Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha of Thailand acknowledged that the country cannot become “a better society through the use of water cannon” and said he intended to withdraw an emergency decree cracking down on pro-democracy protests. As thousands of demonstrators marched on Government House, home of the prime minister’s […]

Read More

Thailand Steps Up Response as Antigovernment Protests Escalate

BANGKOK — As antigovernment protests in Thailand have escalated in recent days, the authorities have responded with an arsenal of threats, diktats and detentions. On Friday, they sprayed demonstrators with water cannons and sent rows of riot police officers at them, forcing a retreat. More than 20 protest leaders have been arrested. And two of them […]

Read More

As Motorcade Rolls By, Thai Royal Family Glimpses the People’s Discontent

BANGKOK — The cream-colored stretch Rolls-Royce limousine crawled past the angry crowds. The queen of Thailand smiled. But what Queen Suthida Vajiralongkorn Na Ayudhya saw on Wednesday, on a road in Bangkok that has been used for royal processions, may have been sobering. Antigovernment protesters yelled “my taxes!,” referring to their personal contributions to royal […]

Read More

Save the Planet, Win a Prize

At a time when elected officials appear stymied by the challenge of climate change, or even in denial about it, it is heartening to see a royal prince pitch in with a good initiative. The Earthshot Prize announced Thursday by Prince William, second in line to the British throne, along with the venerable English broadcaster […]

Read More

Harry and Meghan Encourage Americans to Vote

LONDON — Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, appeared in a video encouraging Americans to register to vote, dipping a toe into United States politics in a way royal family members typically avoid. The video statement, created as part of a Time magazine feature that aired on ABC on Tuesday evening, was hardly partisan by […]

Read More

Protests Shake Bangkok, Challenging Old Guard’s Grip on Thailand

BANGKOK — The monsoonal showers did not stop them. Nor did the specter of 8,550 police officers, whose armed presence evoked violently crushed protest movements in Thailand’s past. Thousands of protesters gathered in Bangkok on Saturday, calling for change: change to Thailand’s military-dominated government, change to the army-drafted constitution and, most explosively, change to the […]

Read More

‘The Time Has Come.’ Barbados Casts Off the Queen as Head of State, and Others May Follow

LONDON — The last time a string of distant dominions cast off Queen Elizabeth was in the 1970s when the Black power movement emboldened three Caribbean countries to declare themselves republics. Now, in the heat of the Black Lives Matter movement, the Caribbean may once again turn against the queen. On Wednesday, Barbados announced it […]

Read More