Princess Diana: Did She Know She Was Going to Die?

Diana herself would have found it hard to believe. As a longtime thorn in the side of the monarchy and more recently the world's most visible crusader against the deployment of land mines, the Princess had made enemies of entire governments—including, it was suggested, her own. She had always numbered among her sworn enemies the faceless "Men in Gray" who wielded immense power behind the scenes at Buckingham Palace. But even more troubling, Diana had been warned that there were also rogue elements inside Britain's domestic and ¬foreign intelligence agencies—MI5 and MI6—who deeply resented the idea of a future king's mother being romantically involved with a Muslim.

In 1995, after dismissing her royal bodyguards, Diana was driving alone through London behind the wheel of her green Audi convertible when she approached a traffic when she approached a traffic light. She put her foot on the brake, but nothing happened. Frantic, she kept slamming the brakes as the car rolled into the intersection. Unharmed, she jumped out of the car and took a cab back to Kensington Palace. Then she dashed off a note to her friends Elsa Bowker, Lucia Flecha de Lima, Simone Simmons, and Lady Annabel Goldsmith. "he brakes of my car have been tampered with," Diana wrote. "If something does happen to me it will be MI5 or MI6."

Just ten months before she arrived in Paris with Dodi, Diana predicted the circumstances surrounding her own demise with uncanny accuracy—in writing. "I am sitting here at my desk today in October," she wrote, "longing for someone to hug me and encourage me to keep strong and hold my head high. This particular phase in my life is the most dangerous. My husband is planning an accident in my car, brake failure and serious head injury in order to make the path clear for Charles to marry."

Incredibly, the woman Diana believed Charles was ready to commit murder for—the woman Scotland Yard would later confirm Diana identified in the letter—was not Camilla Parker Bowles. At the time, Diana was reportedly convinced that her husband had fallen in love with and intended to marry someone much younger and more attractive than Camilla—someone who had not only grown extremely close to Charles, but to William and Harry as well: the boys' nanny, Alexandra "Tiggy" Legge-Bourke. To accomplish this, Diana believed there was a conspiracy to remove both Charles's wife and his mistress from the scene. "Camilla is in danger," Diana told her lawyer, Lord Mishcon. 'They are going to have to get rid of us both."

In her October 1996 letter, Diana decried what she viewed as sixteen years of mistreatment at the hands of the Men in Gray. "I have been battered, bruised, and abused mentally by a system for years now," she wrote,""but I feel no resentment, I carry no hatred. I am strong inside and maybe that is a problem for my enemies." The Princess made it clear how she felt about her ex-husband. "Thank you Charles," Diana went on, "for putting me through such hell and for giving me the opportunity to learn from the cruel things you have done to me. I have gone forward fast and have cried more than anyone will ever know. The anguish nearly killed me, but my inner strength has never let me down. . . ."

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