Queen calls former Prime Minister Ted Heath ‘expendable’ and speaks French in incredible G7 archive clip

Queen calls former Prime Minister Ted Heath ‘expendable’ and speaks French in incredible G7 archive clip

This story was first published in 2021.

A clip of a G7 drinks reception showing the Queen roasting the former Prime Minister, speaking French and giggling with world leaders has been unearthed and is going viral.

The incredible clip, which is from the 1992 documentary Elizabeth R, shows famous faces including Princess Diana, Prince Charles and Margaret Thatcher mingling at a G7 drinks reception in 1991.

One section shows the Queen speaking French. Another shows Thatcher, at that point a backbench MP after her tenure as Prime Minister, greeting Japanese leaders and telling them she is “looking forward” to her trip to the country.

But the most extraordinary scene shows the Queen discussing the situation in Iraq and Saddam Hussein before the Gulf War.

Ted Heath, the then Prime Minister says: “I was absolutely blunt with him and I told him the situation... now I get a message back that he rather wishes he had listened to my advice.”

The Queen replies: “He [Hussein] is master of his own situation, is he?

She then is seen pointing at James Baker, who was the White House Chief of Staff at the time, and saying “he couldn’t go to Baghdad like you could”.

Heath replies: “Well ma’am, I went to Baghdad.”

“Well I know you did, you’re expendable” the Queen replies.

Reacting to the footage, people loved the Queen’s sense of humour, though they found it uncomfortable that Heath and Baker had consistently spoken over and interrupted her:

Meanwhile, another section of the video shows Princess Diana laughing with Barbara Bush about a photo opportunity which they said was just for “the boys”.

Her then husband Prince Charles, on the other hand, is spotted explaining: “[I’m going to] summer school again this year, but I’m quite pleased because I’ve managed to fund it from the sale of my own lithographs, my own paintings, so at least I feel I’ve earned it.”

Fascinating stuff.

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