Claims that Prince Charles likened Putin to Hitler earlier this week on a visit to Canada have been refuted by the heir to the throne, who claims that he “said ‘pudding’, not Putin”.
Prince Charles and an offending pudding
The claims come after a Polish war refugee who met Prince Charles in Nova Scotia said that in a conversation about Hitler’s takeover of countries in the 1930s, the Prince said “it’s not unlike what Putin’s doing”.
Marienne Ferguson, 78, left Poland in 1939 and now volunteers at the Nova Scotia Museum of Immigration. It was here that she and the prince had their now-infamous exchange of remarks.
“It was just a little comment,” she said later, “I didn’t think it would cause such an uproar.”
The uproar comes from the widely-held belief that the Prince of Wales, as an unelected official, should not get involved in international politics; be it with “little comments” or “nuclear weapons”. Such a transgression of this unwritten rule is fodder to those who would call for the monarchy to be abolished and an elected head of state to be set up in its place.
However, the Prince of Wales broke silence just hours ago to issue a corrective statement:
“I have come to learn that a conversation I had in Nova Scotia has become public knowledge. The conversation was centred on Hitler’s actions in the 1930s, in particular his all-consuming take-over of European states. At this point, I drew a comparison between Hitler’s swift occupation of countless countries, and the similarly swift infiltration of countries by pudding. I was referring, of course, to the terrific and total domination of the worldwide food industry by puddings, not – as Ms. Ferguson misheard – to Vladimir Putin’s actions in Ukraine.”
While the Prince’s correction does diffuse international tension between Charles and Putin – whom he is due to meet next month at D-Day Commemorations – it raises further significant questions about the relationship between the British Crown and the international pudding industry.
“Prince Charles has risked alienating many international pudding and dessert manufacturers with his controversial anti-pudding comment,” says BBC Royal Correspondent Peter Hunt, “which will no doubt have a negative effect on the British economy. Does the Prince include savoury puddings in his condemnation? If so, then where does this leave the Yorkshire Pudding? And for Mr Kipling, who is still suffering from the terrible allegations that many British railway bridges are made of cake behind him, the Prince of Wales’ comment can only further damage his company.”