Not for nothing is the Daily Express still known as the Daily Diana, when of course it’s not being referred to as the Daily Maddie. The Express has majored in stories about Diana, Princess of Wales for one very good reason: they continue to sell papers, and there is so much conspiracy theory junk out there to turn into cheap copy. The Desmond press likes it cheap.
And so it came to pass that there was no money in the Express kitty for a proper front page story for today’s paper. What to do? There was clearly no advertorial to churn, no EU horror story waiting in the wings, and no sleb goss that could be lifted from yesterday’s titles. But there was a Diana story – a complete steaming pile of bullpucky, but a Diana story nonetheless.
Which 94th retread was this to be? It was to be the “Diana and Dodi Engagement” one. This tale, which has been debunked more times than the “War on Christmas”, “World War 2 Bomber Found On Moon”, and anything involving a grassy knoll in Houston put together, has merited lead story in the Express because of a former hack on German tabloid Bild called Trixi Chall.
Ms Chall allegedly saw Diana and Dodi in Monaco, where they visited a jeweller’s store. But we know they visited Alberto Repossi’s, and that a ring from a range called “tell me yes” was purchased by Fayed Junior. We also know that Diana was intending to wear the ring on her right hand, and that she was treating it as a “friendship” ring, not one indicating engagement.
We also know that the jeweller has previously claimed that he was selling an engagement ring, but had previously not been sure, or even had stated that it wasn’t an engagement ring. And we’ve had the associated story telling that Diana was pregnant at the time of her death. Except that she wasn’t. There is nothing new in the Express story.
At least, though, there is no attempt to place Prince Philip at the wheel of the white Fiat Uno. Another one for the bin.