Markle debacle about to get uglier
JUST when you thought it was safe to assume the Markle family had learned their lessons, another crisis looms for their royal relative.
The Duchess of Sussex is basking in worldwide glory after her captivating wedding in Windsor at the weekend to Prince Harry. The nuptials came after days of tension following unwanted interventions from estranged family members and her father Thomas being caught in a fake photo scandal, and then not attending the wedding.
Now her half-sister Samantha Grant - of "vulture" infamy - has caused outrage by once again bringing unwanted attention onto Meghan.
Samantha today claimed Meghan's mum Doria Ragland was cashing in on her famous daughter by sharing pictures of them together soon after the romance with Prince Harry began.
Samantha, and Meghan, 36, have the same father, but she only recently began using the surname Markle - until now she has been known as Samantha Grant.
She made the attention-seeking slur on Twitter.
"Even Doria cashed in talking to Oprah and some of the first photos out there only she could have had".
Reports suggest Ms Ragland will give an interview to media giant Oprah Winfrey, who was one of the first high profile guests to arrive at Windsor Castle for the wedding ceremony.
"The plan is for Doria to film part of her interview while Oprah is in London. That's why she was invited to the wedding. There's huge secrecy about what the interview will involve and when it will air," a royal source told The Sun.
Samantha was branded a vulture by media figure Piers Morgan after she claimed it was media pressure that caused her father to pull out of the wedding. She later admitted it was her idea for him to pose in fake paparazzi pictures so he would better improve his public image.
The 53-year-old has written an autobiography called The Diary of Princess Pushy's Sister.
She also lashed Meghan for ignoring her father and accused her of not taking care of him, telling The Sun: "I have receipts showing I've sent my father money twice by MoneyGram because he needed it He is badly in need of help. I'm dreadfully worried about him. He's completely on his own."
She went on to accuse Kensington Palace of failing to properly care for him as the attention of the world fell on him as the wedding neared.
But even as her tweet takes aim at Ms Ragland, it has emerged that she herself may have directly profited from the wedding.
According to the Daily Mail, Samantha was paid a five-figure amount to watch the wedding with a TV crew.
She appeared to defend the move when she was criticised by a Twitter user for not acting more like the Middletons, the family of Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge.
She responded: "They don't have to speak to the media they have royal money and legal protection even members of the family who did not speak it were preyed upon by media vultures and photographers."
The latest Markle family ugliness has reignited fears the so called Markle Debacle that caused havoc before the wedding could become an ongoing burden and distraction for the royal couple.
Journalist and public relations consultant Phil Dampier, who wrote Royally Suited Harry and Meghan in their own words, told news.com.au there had been plenty of warning about possible conflict.
"The Palace has had a massive wake up call with the 'Markle debacle' that ruined the build up to the wedding. They should have flown out and helped Thomas Markle, giving him advice on how to handle the press and pay for his suit and airfare."
Dampier said it was obvious there were unresolved tensions in the family.
"Clearly there are issues between Meghan and her dad which need to be resolved or this could be a running sore. It's extraordinary that Harry still has not met him.
"Kensington Palace thought they could control everything to the last detail, but this proves you can't always."
He warned palace officials would need to act quickly to stop any further problems arising.
"When the excitement of the wedding dies down the Markles could be embarrassing again so they need to get a grip on this."
Thomas Markle, 73, has reportedly told relatives he expects Meghan and Harry to visit him in Mexico after their honeymoon, but no trip has been announced officially.
The exact nature of Meghan's relationship with her father is unclear - some reports suggest she ignored his texts on her wedding day, and others say she was in daily communication with him.
Her only public statement about him was when she confirmed he was too unwell to attend the wedding after undergoing heart surgery. "I have always cared for my father and hope he can be given the space he needs to focus on his health," the statement read.
While some royal watchers fear the ugly headlines will continue, some believe the public will tire of the Markle antics.
Royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams said he doubted they would do major damage.
"I just don't think damage limitation will be required. I mean Samantha seems discredited and this book [she#s writing] no one has seen a copy of it...I mean frankly I think she has become an irrelevance."
Even if they continued to embarrass, it would become less newsworthy.
"Even if Meghan's family, and a couple of them have been perfectly poisonous, become news again I don't see it [causing problems]. They tend to shoot themselves in the foot every time they open their mouths.