Should Martin Bashir be fired for his Princess Diana ‘Panorama’ interview – BBC investigates

New documents reveal the deception and deceit that landed BBC the bombshell Princess Diana interview.

We have briefly touched on ITV‘s bombshell documentary that claims that false documents were presented to Princess Diana and her brother to convince her to pursue her nightmare Panorama interview. Diana, The Truth Behind the Interview goes behind the scenes of the 1995 secret sit-down that was seen by 23 million people.

During the interview, Princess Diana questions Prince Charles’ ability to properly reign as king. This resulted in the princess being formally rejected by the royal family and stripped of her title. Not to mention the complete blow out she had with Prince William over the humiliation of her exposing her affair with James Hewitt. It was also said to be the first time Princess Margaret sided with Prince Charles.

BBC initially responded to the accusations admitting that the documents presented to Princess Diana were forged but said reporter Martin Bashir has been too sick with COVID-19 to respond. Days ago photographers caught a photo of Bashir getting take out.

A former BBC chairman, Michael Grade, recently told press that the allegations are “a very, very serious matter,” and “there is a very dark cloud hanging over BBC journalism.”

Over the last few weeks, Charles Spencer (9th Earl Spencer) has put the heat on BBC to investigate the tactics that they pursued to secure the secret interview with his vulnerable sister.

Journalist Jonny Dymond says the notes Earl Spencer says he made with Bashir two months before the interview are “astonishing.”

Bashir allegedly claimed that Princess Diana’s private correspondence were being opened, her car tracked, her phone tapped, her bodyguard was plotting against her, and close friends were leaking stories to the press.

If you’ve read Butler Paul Burrell‘s book A Royal Duty – originally published in 2001 – you know that these were all serious concerns of Princess Diana.

Over the weekend Earl Spencer tweeted, “Many people are, quite understandably, asking why I’ve waited till now to come forward with the truth about how the BBC Panorama [interview] with my sister came about. While I knew that Martin Bashir used fake bank statements and other dishonesty to get my sister to do the interview, what I only found out 2 weeks ago, thanks to journalist Andy Webb’s persistent use of the Freedom of Information Act, is that the BBC also knew. Not only knew about it, but that they covered it up.”

“If it were not for me seeing these [fake] statements, I would not have introduced Bashir to my sister,” Spencer said in a letter to the BBC.

These extraordinary revelations have come to light in 2020 thanks to Andy Webb. He is the writer and director of Diana, The Truth Behind the Interview. Mr. Webb originally requested documents pertaining to the Panorama interview back in 2007. He was granted access to the documents 13 years later… 48 HOURS before his documentary aired.

BUT… Webb was not the first one to break this story! Nick Fielding and Jason Lewis of The Mail on Sunday originally broke this story in April of 1996! “It was unduly and unjustly denied that recognition at the time,” Fielding told Press Gazette.

Also speaking out is graphic designer Matt Wiessler, who says that he was instructed to create the documents by Bashir and was “made the scapegoat” in a 1996 BBC inquiry into the interview. He says his career never recovered.

The BBC announced on Monday that it is ordering a fresh inquiry… “The BBC is taking this very seriously and we want to get to the truth,” said a spokesperson. “We are in the process of commissioning a robust and independent investigation.”

“Journalistic ethics” have never been more important than it is right now. If the accusations are true, this is a shocking and disappointing discovery for Princess Diana’s family.

Kinsey Schofield is the Founder of To Di For Daily and you can follow her on TwitterInstagram, or Facebook.