Prince Harry ‘paid to kill his grandmother’s enemies’

Prince Harry's role in the Army sees him earn money for "killing his grandmother's enemies", a Tory MP and military expert said today.

The comments follow an interview in which the prince revealed he had shot at Taliban insurgents while acting as a commander of one of the army's most sophisticated attack helicopters.

"If there's people trying to do bad stuff to our guys, then we'll take them out of the game, I suppose," he said.

"Take a life to save a life. The squadron's been out here. Everyone's fired a certain amount."

The comments divided commentators, with some warning it would be used by Taliban and al-Qaida propagandists against British forces.

But Tory MP Patrick Mercer told BBC News he found it "quite refreshing".

"We can't get away from the fact that soldiers and marines are designed to fight," he said.

"Fighting is brutal but it goes on and people get killed. We can't hide that away in some politically correct corner.

"I actually find it quite refreshing that a blood royal and a fine young man in a combat regiment is prepared to say what he's been doing.

"That's what he's paid to do. He's paid to kill his grandmother's enemies, and that's what he's been doing."

Elsewhere in the interview, the prince admitted occasionally letting himself down with laddish behaviour, which he put down to "probably being too much army and not enough prince".