Prince Harry Says Wearing Nazi Costume at Age 20 Was 'One of the Biggest Mistakes of My Life'

"All I wanted to do was make it right," Prince Harry says in his new Netflix docuseries of how he felt after backlash for wearing a Nazi uniform as a costume in 2005

Prince Harry
Prince Harry. Photo: Victoria Jones - WPA Pool/Getty

Prince Harry is expressing deep remorse over wearing a Nazi uniform to a 2005 costume party.

The Duke of Sussex opens up about the incident in the new Harry & Meghan docuseries, which premiered Thursday morning on Netflix and sees Harry and wife Meghan Markle tell their story in their own words.

Calling the decision "one of the biggest mistakes of my life," Harry, who was 20 at the time, went on to say he "felt so ashamed afterwards."

"All I wanted to do was make it right," he added.

And while he "could've just ignored it and probably made the same mistakes over and over again," Harry, now 38, "learnt from" the experience.

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Prince Harry
Prince Harry Wears a Nazi Costume in 2005. Stephen Chernin/Getty

"I sat down and spoke to the chief rabbi in London, which had a profound impact on me," he recalled on the series. "I went to Berlin and spoke to a Holocaust survivor."

The royal also addressed the idea of "unconscious bias" in his family, noting that while "it's actually no one's fault," that doesn't absolve one of responsibility.

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"Once it's been pointed out or identified within yourself you then need to make it right," he said. "It's education, it's awareness and it's a constant work in progress for everyone ― including me."

Harry was photographed wearing a Nazi soldier's uniform with a red-and-black swastika armband and an army shirt while clutching a drink at a friend's costume party on Jan. 8, 2005.

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The incident occurred just two weeks before the 60th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp.

After the incident, Harry apologized in a statement, saying, "I am very sorry if I caused any offense or embarrassment to anyone. It was a poor choice of costume and I apologize."

The Board of Deputies of British Jews said at the time that it was "pleased that [Harry has] apologized for … his ill-judged actions."

"We would now want to concentrate on ensuring that everyone understands the evils and enormity of the Holocaust, and the resonance of the swastika, not only to the Jewish community, but to all in the United Kingdom affected by the Second World War against the Nazis," the group added.

The first three episodes of Harry & Meghan are now streaming on Netflix.

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