Royals Reach Out to Meghan Markle on 40th Birthday: Have They Finally Buried the Hatchet?

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It's almost impossible to believe that Meghan Markle is a day over 29, but the Duchess of Sussex hit the big 4-0 on Wednesday.

Of course, Meghan is one of the most beloved women on the planet, so any anxiety that she might be feeling about crossing the line into middle-age is surely allayed by the loving tributes that have poured in from every corner of the globe.

This year, to the surprise of many, the members of the royal family were among those who wished Meghan a happy birthday.

But that doesn't mean that all is well between these two warring factions of the Windsor clan.

Meghan Markle: A Photograph

“Wishing a happy 40th birthday to the Duchess of Sussex,” read a tweet from William and Kate.

"Wishing The Duchess of Sussex a very Happy Birthday today!" the account associated with the Queen wrote.

(As much as we love picturing QE2 busting out her iPhone and tapping out a tweet with tiny white gloves on, it probably didn't happen that way.)

The Queen Tweets

Charles and Camilla also posted pics of Meghan and wished her a happy day.

Unfortunately for the royals, very few social media users are so easily fooled in 2021.

The fact is, relations between Meghan and her in-laws have never been worse.

Meghan Markle with a Very Large Hat

The birthday wishes come amid reports that the royals hated Meghan from the very beginning of her time with Harry.

Insiders say the family is in crisis mode over these reports, as well as news about Harry's upcoming memoir, which -- if it's as explosive as many are anticipating -- could be enough to effectively bring an end to the institution of the British Royal Family.

The ill will between the two factions has been on full display in recent weeks, as William and Harry kept their distance at two prominent events:

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry: A Photo

First, reporters noticed an iciness between the brothers at Prince Philip's funeral, and just weeks later, William and Harry steered clear of one another at the unveiling of a memorial statue honoring their mother, Princess Diana.

An insider tells In Touch that William and Harry “did talk briefly at the unveiling and are on civil terms,” adding that their “deep-rooted issues have not been resolved.”

“William is trying really hard to forgive Harry for what he’s put the family through, but he just can’t let go of his anger,” says the source.

Charles, Elizabeth, Meghan

Of course, all of this is taking place in the wake of Meghan's bombshell interview with Oprah Winfrey, an event that has made peaceful relations between the Sussexes and the rest of the royals a virtual impossibility.

“We never left the family,” Meghan reminded the world, noting that she and Harry had merely stepped back from their professional roles.

“We were saying, ‘OK, if this isn’t working for everyone, we’re in a lot of pain, you can’t provide us with the help that we need, we can just take a step back," the duchess continued.

Meghan Markle Interview Pic

"We can do it in a commonwealth country.’ We suggested New Zealand, South Africa.” 

That conciliatory offer ignored, she and Harry proceeded to move to America, a gesture that has been regarded by many as the ultimate betrayal.

So no, the birthday wishes issued to Meghan this week are not a sign that she and the royals have managed to bury the hatchet.

If anything, they serve as a reminder of just how deep the divide remains.

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