Nathan Phillips – “Vietnam Times” Veteran

| January 21, 2019


By now you have all seen the images and read about the controversy surrounding the encounter at a rally in Washington, D.C. involving some high school students and a Native American – Nathan Phillips.

Nathan is a tribal elder and has often been put forth as a Marine Corps Vietnam veteran.

We have filed for his military records but the point of this article is that there are stories all over the place about what Phillips’ status is and to do this right takes time.

But in the media’s rush to get a story out — what “facts” rise to the surface and what did Phillips actually say about his military service?

As a good example, in this CNN newscast, Phillips states that he is a “Vietnam Times Veteran” while CNN runs the label below him quoting him as saying  “I am a Vietnam Veteran…” which is not what he said.

Then, CNN puts up the label of “Native American War Vet”…

Now, “Vietnam times” seems to be an interesting way of stating his service, but did it really mean “Vietnam era” or simply his time in Vietnam?  According to his direct quote with NewsMaven, he uses the same terminology but also extends it to “Marine Corps times” sounding like a period in his life.

Nathan Phillips: Thank you for your support. I could do some more prayers. Honestly. I’m still scared. I’m still feeling vulnerable. But I’m not gonna back down. Those young people from that school, that song was a prayer for their future and my children’s future. We’re facing critical times and we’ve got to make choices, and they’re going to be some hard choices.

I’m not a chief or anything. But I feel like at that moment it was for me to do what I’ve always said in for a long time is that I’m expendable. You know, when I was in Vietnam times and when I was in the Marine Corps times, that’s what I was. I was expendable. Expendable to corporate greed. You know, in all wars, especially the ones that are going down for the oil, you know, we’re fighting against — the pipelines. Now that we’re at a point where we’ve drawn the line, we’ve got to stand that line. All of us.

We have received a lot of questions about Nathan Phillips’ actual service but until his military records come back, the best we could do is to look for a signature in the digital reference library known as the internet.

In a article, it states that Mr. Phillips “was placed in a foster home as a child and later joined the Marines and served in Vietnam.”   However, this was not a direct quote from Nathan Phillips.  This seemed to reference a Detroit Free Press article which emphasized Phillips’ life story.

In the Detroit Free Press article, it claims Phillips is a “former Marine” and went on later to elaborate more, stating that Phillips served in the Vietnam War.

Born in Nebraska into the Omaha tribe, Phillips said he was five years old when he was “taken away from my family and put in foster care … until I was 17.”

Phillips said he grew up in an abusive home, started working on construction and lumber jobs, and then joined the Marines, serving in the Vietnam War.

He later moved to Washington, D.C., and became active with Native American issues. He’s now with the Native Youth Alliance and also does work with Native American veterans.

It is important to point out that Phillips was not quoted directly, so there’s always the possibility of an over-zealous reporter hearing “Vietnam-Times veteran” or “Vietnam-Era veteran” and assigning their own take on it.

If one were to go back further, The Warren Record (NC) published an article on February 4, 2009 titled “Drum Group Showcases Native American Culture.”  They referred to Phillips as a “Vietnam veteran” although he was not quoted directly as saying that.

In a recent article by The Arizona Daily Star on January 20, 2019, they stated that Phillips was a “Vietnam War veteran” and as before, Phillips was not quoted directly.

It has been reported several times in the media that Nathan Phillips is 63-64 years old.  That would have put him at 18 years old in 1973, so he would have graduated high school in either 1972 or 1973.  It would have been an extremely tight timeline to have him in the country of Vietnam during the War.  This alone has some people raising questions.

So, as we at TAH do the right thing and wait for all the correct facts and documentation to come in, we can watch this story play out in the media as to Nathan Phillips’ military service – what he actually claimed and what the media is claiming.

Maybe some of the TAH ninjas can find other quotes and/or piece together more information from their own experiences?

Some will be quick to claim it a case of Stolen Valor but what did Mr. Phillips actually claim?  Others may be embarrassed that they went with a story too quickly before all the facts were checked – because it was too sexy to ignore and it fit their narrative.  It will be interesting to see how some folks will backtrack.

As the old saying goes – time will tell.

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I hope he isn’t a veteran. His lying and his confronting kids that were being helped at by real racists for an hour is a disgrace. I would hope a veteran doesn’t do that but who knows this guy is a scumfuck supreme.


He may very well be a Veteran.

What branch and degree of service is wide open for official discovery through FOIA.

However, by his own words and actions … we know what he IS not!


Well said.


He served in the Marines from 1972-1976. Very doubtful he was in Vietnam. With the exception of the Marine advisory team with the South Vietnam Marine Corps, and the guards at the US Embassy, the Maines withdrew from Vietnam in 1971.

In fairness to Phillips, it was the press who described him as a “Vietnam veteran.” Phillip’s use of the term “Vietnam time” means Vietnam era.

Regardless Phillip’s veteran status is immaterial to what happened this past weekend. There is nothing inherently good or bad about veteran status. My own experience on active duty, 3 years Army, including 1 year in Vietnam, was I met some of the finest people one could possibly know, and others, to use a cliche, not worth the dynamite to blow them to hell. You know, just like the general population.

What’s going to happen is that Phillip’s claim of being a Vietnam veteran will become the issue, instead of the confrontation with the MAGA hat wearer.


Outside chance he was one of the unlucky few who got packed off to Koh Tang (Cambodia) to fight the Khmer Rouge in May 1975 (‘The Mayaguez Incident’). I think that was the last actual conflict of the Vietnam War..?

John O

He claimed in a
CNN interview he was a Vietnam veteran.


Does he perhaps work on the staff of Senator Richard Blumenthal?


No. But Bradley Manning wants to work on the Dick’s “staff”.


That was my first thought!


Jonn would approve, IMHO.

TAH should maintain the highest standards of reporting the facts as we know them, acknowledging what is uncertain, and being open for correction.


Phillips admits he spent 14 years as a drunk and a street thug, probably homeless and a panhandler as well. He certainly has that certain, um, cachet, those types seem to share. Think maybe that’s when he learned the value of labeling himself a Vietnam Veteran as so many of them do?

From the looks of him, he very well still could be a drunk and a panhandler.


He is typical of the guy who claims service in the War of the Viet of the Nam.

Popcorn ….


Well, his bio said he was the “keeper of the sacred pipe”. Perhaps he was the smoker of the “sacred pole” as well.


I like how he claims he used his skilz learnt in the USMC as a steely-eyed man-killer helped him to perform as a criminal thug for fourteen years. The only thing he likely learned in the Corps was rifle marksmanship, so unless he was a hit man, I have trouble believing that BS.


Pizza Box!


He’s not a complete deadbeat…he once had a paying gig standing outside a cigar store


So, my in box is full on the drum beater. I know how this will end.

I look forward to the FOIA.

Like I said … at best embellishment and worst … A TOTAL FRAUD.

So I will reserve how I really feel.

RGR 4-78

“my in box is full”
No rest for the weary.

Well done on the radio interview Master Chief.


Great interview.
I think you opened the flood gates on interest concerning SV.
Lots of new commentors all of a sudden.


I do what I know …

And yes, each time I (and TAH) takes to Lars, the comments spike.


Unless protocol has changed, Veteran Service Records are not FOIA eligble for release to anyone other than the next of kin. In that instance, they must contact their nearest VA Decedent Affairs office and present documentation as required. I do not believe you will get any records for veteran service via FOIA request.


Nope. Not true. They are publicly available once PII has been redacted.


“Unless protocol has changed”

Nope not at all true. Also not a recent change.


..and welcome to the rodeo. 🙂


“I do not believe you will get any records for veteran service via FOIA request”

What? Are you new?


You should read the RECORDS tab at the top of the page.

2/17 Air Cav

I’d point out, NANA S, that the folks associated with this blog and other blogs have requested and received thousands of service records over the years. Perhaps your misunderstanding is shared by many valor thieves and embellishers who think that their lies are safe and secure. They are not. Thus, it sucks to be them.


You must be the one, that I had nice discussion with about FOIA records and Vets, about two weeks ago. This was on Navy times, FB, about requesting records and calling people out. I ended with giving you the Records Web site and told you to check out SV sites like this. Welcome and brace your self.



John Chalus

I was born October 1951.I graduated in June 1969. I went to Navy boot camp in November 1969. I was 18. Went to RVN September 1971. Last SEAL direct action Platoon in RVN. I’m 67 . It is very unlikely that someone younger than me served in the Marines and went to Vietnam unless they were one of the Marines who were deployed to embassy


JC, Need to reevaluate the math. I was born July 1953, graduated HS at 17, went straight into active army turned 18 while training AIT 11B Ft. Polk, sent directly to VN after 2 wks Lv. Assigned to 3rd Bde (sep), 1st Cav. Still in active combat role till 26 June ’72. Other younger vets followed and were assigned to Garry Owen Task Force till later. Some U.S. troops/Marines with varying combat MOS stayed/engaged till March ’73. View ‘The Wall’ by date of deaths. The war changed drastically with the Easter Offensive of 1972.


One article states much of the same about his upbringing but more details. He said he finally ran away to another state at age 16 due to abuse from his adoptive white parents. Then joined the Marines at 17. If so he would have needed his parents written consent. Questionable.


So, Colin Kaepernick was inspired by this dork?


He was a Marine Ranger of course…..


Well…. an E-1 Marine is pretty much a Regiment Ranger E-5.

Michael Z. Williamson

“A Marine recon ranger” per his own statement.

Do the Marines have “Recon rangers” I ask rhetorically?




The Marine Recon Rangers call and adjust fires for Navy Seal artillery units. They are trained in the operation and maintenance of heavy dual muzzle command & conquer “mammoth” tanks. Marine Recon Rangers usually arrive to battle in a firefly class cargo hauler. Some Recon Rangers play magical drums.

A Proud Infidel®™

IMHO “Marine Ranger” makes about as much sense as a US Army SEAL.


its keeps the tempo during a jody call, but news flash, when I was singing such things, my girl was also not actually a vegetable. 🙂


I can neither confirm nor deny the demise of the aforementioned yellow bird with a yellow bill, nor would I be authorized to comment if I possessed such knowledge.

John P Pratt

In a Toledo Blade article dated July 2, 2007 it says, Mr. Phillips served in the Marine Corps in Vietnam from 1972-76. Maybe the reporter got it wrong but thats pretty specific. It seems like whether he said it or not it was said about him and he went with it. That is what it looks like to me.


Phillips himself says he is a “vietnam veteran times” who “served in the Marine Corps from 72-76” in this interview. Minute 1:07

T Rex

He clearly states he’s a Vietnam Veteran in the interview.

He also says something about a year and a half in Vietnam but I cant understand the very end of his statement.


What interview are you talking about? It seems he is being weasely in his usage of the phrase “Vietnam Times Veteran” for sure.


Well, that explains everything, he was also a POW.

Preston Harper

And I’m a Vietnam veteran and I know that mentality of “There’s enough of us. We can do this.”

He declares that he’s a vietnam vet. But I remember another interview which I can’t located at the moment where he said that he went in 1976 AFTER the war was over.

Steve Bison

The song he sang in the face of this boy is the A.I.M song from the American Indian Movement. Pretty in your face to sing this at this time. Would have been different if He had done this to me. I look white but would have sang right back at him this anthem and surprised and embarrassed him with my reaction. Steve Bison the full-blooded half breed


CNN stated that the transcriot had been “lightly edited” right before you start reading it. So we would need to see their unedited transcripts, and then make a HUGE LEAP OF FAITH that they practice responsible journalism.

RGR 4-78

Putting “riot” into CNN’s transcript, I like that.

Aleta (Lu) Eberhardt

First off, I want to thank all of you who’ve served. I come from a family that has had people in just about every branch of the military. I lost my cousin in Vietnam November’69, he was with the Army’s 1st Aviation Brigade.
I found this blog while investigating Nathan Phillips and the possibility of stolen valor. I have learned a lot more information just reading these comments, and for that I,again, thank you all. I plan on dropping by now and again for these type of discussions and look forward to email updates.
Please have an enjoyable night.

Aleta Eberhardt

Thank you so much. I have been able to track down quite a bit regarding Eric, my cousin, over the years. I was quite a bit younger than him when he passed, but I was very close to my uncle & aunt (his parents) and grew up with stories about him. He was so young and their only son so it devastated our family.
My grandfather, several uncles,both my brothers & my brother in law have all served.
I definitely await the outcome of this investigation. Thanks so very much for the warm welcome.

Michael M.

“You know, I’m from Vietnam times. I’m what they call a recon ranger. That was my role. So I thank you for taking that point position for me.”


Here’s another interview where he talks about his military experience and years served in the Marine Corps. (Minute 1:08)


I found an article that quotes him talking about coming back from Vietnam…..

“In tears, Phillips explained that he had literally dropped off his wife at the emergency room days before the ceremony. He had expressed to her that he wanted to stay with her, be she told him to go and conduct the ceremony.

Phillips also described coming back to the U.S. as a veteran of the Vietnam era. “People called me a baby killer and a hippie girl spit on me.”

The entire crowd was moved by the events and words spoken. Phillips then led the gathering in the lighting and partaking of the sacred pipe.”


“…I was a recon ranger… that was my role.”


He calls himself a “RECON RANGER”.

I knew he might be lying about being in Vietnam, but the more you dig, the more lies you find about him.

Check this out:


Thank you all for serving! I hope somebody stays up on this story and the gentleman gets called out on any untruths! What he has already done to these you g men is disgusting
I am not usually one to call for lawsuits but if I was a parent of one of these boys I would be all over that!

Penny Carstens

Well he was in a Foster home until he was 17. Maybe he didn’t graduate.

John Dietrich

Did he serve with Senator Blumenthal?


Given that he was put into the foster system, has deep ties to activist bullshit and especially where he went into the foster system it, yet again, hints to the foster system/youth offender program being used as a would be recruitment center by anti American groups to grab kids from a young age to create internal conflict within country. Especially that specific area in Michigan which is where BAMN basically kidnapped kids from such situations and moved them to different centers all around the country for that very reason. If you do not know what I am talking about, look into the “BAMN confessionals” or if you can’t find them just let me know as I archived them long ago.

But we all know how this will end. The guy is a fraud, anyone who has served knows it, we just need the paperwork to verify but the guy doesn’t even talk like anyone who has served and doesn’t even know what the hell he served as. We have seen this song and dance many times and it always ends with the person being a fraud. The media will close it down, offer no apologies and just wait for their next attempt to try to harm America loving citizens with absolutely nothing happening to them and the harm they cause due to their corrupt BS. The media is very much responsible for these issues and the harm that befalls anyone and yet nothing ever happens to them and they just do it again and again.

Leo McBride

I am a Native American. Lakota born on the Rosebud Rez in So. Dakota. Born in 1943. ARMY 1962-1969. Decorated Vietnam Vet and Warrior to my people. I earned my eagle feather and I’m a Liberal(which quite a few of you hate). How nice of you to feel the need to trash Native People like me who served their country with honor. These posts are full of nasty and derogatory names and symbols for “Indians”. In the Vietnam war 90% of Native Americans volunteered. I watched over six videos of the incident at the Lincoln Memorial. Here is my take: The radical black Israelites (RBI) group insulted EVERYBODY. They insulted a group of Native Americans. The Natives tried to engage the group in a civil discussion, but the RBIs called them “savages” because they “worship buffalo”. The Natives left after realizing that the Israelites didn’t want to have a reasonable discussion. The RBIs also insulted other black people, using the N word, and calling one person “Young Kanye”. The RBIs also insulted the school kids, using racial slurs (“cracker”) and implying they were homosexual. The school kids were riled up and enthusiastic for a conflict. But at the same time, they were scared of the RBIs and knew better than to go too far. Nonetheless, both sides were escalating the confrontation, getting louder and moving closer to each other. The Natives saw the conflict and they came in to distract the groups and de-escalate the situation. Both the RBIs and the school kids then appeared to start mocking the Natives. The school kids circled around the Natives and the one kid stared down Phillips. At no time did I see Phillips drum close in the kids face. Bottom line: The school kids were mad at the RBIs but knew they would be no match for the RBIs. So they took out their hostility on an easier target instead. Bullies. Both the RBIs and the school kids are assholes. Only the Natives come out of this thing unscathed. Phillips in all the videos never was hostile or hurt anyone. And by… Read more »


300 comments and counting and I’ve yet to see him insulted for the fact he’s a Native American.

The fact he discredits pretty much everything he touches, however, that’s a different story.


Leo – Welcome to the TAH blog and thank you for your service to this country.

You put a lot of things on the table here and it makes it difficult to isolate any main concern that you have. You also have some assertions about everybody’s motive on this blog, lumping all together as one collective mind.

Speaking for myself: the main theme of the original post is inaccuacy of reporting by the media about veteran status. In fact, Phillips was defended for not saying things that the media attributed to him. This is a predictable train wreck that may or may not be Phillips’ fault, but it remains to be seen.

Contrary to you assertion, I do not hate liberals. I disagree with them on some things and agree on other things – much like conservatives I know. Please don’t fall into a trap of pre-villainizing someone you wish to debate. It falsely sets you up as the higher moral authority and immediately discredits the other person. Right off the bat it destroys any useful dialog.

As to the rest of your argument, I would like to hear all of the facts as they come in since I was not there.

As far as Mr. Phillips military service – what do you think of the term “Vietnam times” to describe service status?

Leo McBride

Hello. I was placed in a Catholic boarding school as a child for 9 months out of the year. Native people were not allowed to go to public school. The priests beat and raped us. I only saw my parents and siblings 3 months out of the year. I was called Savage, Prairie Nigger, Drunk, Redskin, Stupid, etc. I was a child! To those that think I have a victim mentality? Far far from it. I will say I never trust a Catholic and hate that church. In fact if(I had a victim mentality) that was true why would I join the military? My purpose in life is to show people who know nothing about Native people that we are not savages. And to those who already attack me for being a fake. Of course you do. I use my real name. Sergeant E-5 in the “Tropic Lightning” 25th. Have nothing to hide. Does this site always check everybody who posts here? To see if there ex military, cool. I stand by what I said as all of you do. And I would never belittle anybody that served until all the facts are in about Phillips. I don’t know Phillips. I know it will be a huge and horrific thing if he is lying. One thing Native people don’t need is a liar. And also I don’t like anybody who lies about their service. And just a small story: 2010 Atlanta airport. My wife and I walking through to catch our flight. I was stopped 5 times by security to check my carry on when I was walking. I asked why? Was told I fit the profile. I have dark skin and long black hair(well I did then Lol). On the fifth time one of the security/TSA guys saw my Vietnam Vets hat and stopped. He asked me if I served and when I said yes that’s when the searching stopped and he apologized. So yes I have faced discrimination for what I look like. Have been followed many times in my life in stores etc. Have yes been discriminated… Read more »


lots of words Leo…very little thought.


“The Natives saw the conflict and they came in to distract the groups and de-escalate the situation.”

“Only the Natives come out of this thing unscathed.”

” At no time did I see Phillips drum close in the kids face.”

So on one hand the kids were blocking the Native Americans from walking to the Lincoln memorial but also the Native Americans were just getting between the kids and the black israelites to defuse the situation. Phillips story has changed several times already. Which one is it? Because it can’t be both.

Only the Natives come out of this thing unscathed? Ok. I guess if you’re ok with a guy telling a kid go back to fucking Europe, we’ve been here a million fucking years so get the fuck out of my face with that shit.

Not sure what you would consider close to the kids face. But I would consider this pretty fucking close to someone’s face.


Oh, and the “Build the Wall” chant? Still waiting for evidence that any of the teens chanted that. The only time I heard it said in over 2 hours of unedited video was when the Black Hebrew Israelites said it several times towards the Native American group.

Morgan Blake

Hello Leo.

I’m overweight and I bet that you don’t like me because I’m fat.

I’m one of those people that get frowns when I sit beside someone on the airplane. I use an electric cart at WalMart because I get tired when I walk around too much.

In regard to this incident, I think the kid was portrayed unfairly in the media.

I’d like to hear your rebuttal but I’m already thinking that it will be negative because you don’t like the fact that I’m overweight.

So, go ahead and start attacking me because I’m overweight.

[Did that sound familiar, Leo? Don’t cop a ‘tude prior to putting out your debate point and people will take you more seriously. You know, it’s not always about you being the victim. Have you ever considered that it’s not because you’re Native American – it’s because people may simply not like you. I get your point – if you frame everybody as a racist then you are always in a better position. Good luck with that if it’s how you want to live your life.]

Green Thumb

The kids were minors.

Phillips approached the kid and stopped. He could have passed around him.

If Phillips and his group were getting insulted as well by the RBI’s, then why engage the kids and not the RBI’s? When one deescalates a situation, one usually does not pick a side.


” Phillips and his group were getting insulted as well by the RBI’s, then why engage the kids and not the RBI’s?”

Could it be that the kids were less likely to pound their ass into the ground?


Only one Native American is being blamed for this, and his name is Nathan Phillips. Thank you for your service and thoughtful input.

Michael Caputo

“At no time did I see Phillips drum close in the kids face.”

You are willfully blind.


more likely a troll


…probably one we know by another name 🙂


The dubious stats, straw-man arguments, and passive-aggressive tone.

Who ever do you mean?


Wouldn’t someone showing up, attempting to hijack a thread and pretending to be someone else to avoid taking responsibility for their words be grounds for being banned?


Gee whiz, it’s not like it hasn’t happened before, is it?


I think I’ve seen this movie.


Elizabeth Warren?




I think this guy is being attacked for being a liar. I’m not sure why that is so hard for you to see.

Steve Joyce

I will wait to see what the DOD official records say, if any exists, to make any definitive comment on his claims.
BUT I will say right now that they sound and smell fishy to me.
ex-USN destroyerman

Mike W.

No matter what, veteran or not, he PUSHED his way forward and stopped within breath distance of the young man and started beating a drum right near his face.
He’s an asshole, veteran/war veteran not withstanding……


Perhaps that is what riled up a “certain group” of the agitators…he clearly had no rhythm


Thank You, again, Steve Balm, for your well-written post that started this thread.

Dugged in deeper into research and found Nathaniel Alan Phillips’s biological parents and siblings. One caught my eye. It was for his Brother, Rolin Patrick Phillips (1949-1976). His obituary stated that Nathan was at El Toro, CA in 1976:

“Mr. Phillips was born Nov. 23, 1949, at Winnebago. He was a veteran of the Vietnam War. Survivors include three sisters, Mrs. Mary Delores Jackson, Miss Francelia Phillips and Miss Francine Phillips, all of Lincoln; five brothers, Darwin and Truman, both of Lincoln, Alfred of Grand Island, Vernie Jr. of San Carlos, Ariz., and Nathaniel of El Toro, Calif..”

1976, El Toro = Marine Corps Aviation.

His Father’s Obituary stated that Nathan was in the Marine Corps (Vernon Phillips died in 1975):

“PHILLIPS – Vernie Sr., 57, 222 Q, died Tuesday. Survivors: daughters, Francella L., Francine D., Mrs. Mary D. all Lincoln; sons, Darwin, Alfred K., Truman C., Lincoln, Verne Jr., Globe, Ariz,, Rolle, Oklahoma City, Okla., Nathaniel A., U.S. Marines….”

Still believe his DOB is 22 February 1955. Not sure now about NYC being his place of birth since all his siblings were born in Nebraska.

Also, if he was “adopted” or place in a foster home, his other surname might have been “Stanard”.

Nathan Alan Phillips. Possibly a Bonafide Marine who was a Vietnam Era Veteran.

As you stated, Steve, time will tell (his FOIA records).

Thank You for doing the right thing.


Normally inclined to rush to judgment, but in this case am holding back until all is shown to the public, including clarification as to whom approached whom during the event unfolding.

Cowabunga, I am going to offer a personal thought which I’d bet caught Dave’s eye. Nathan claims he “was in the Marine Corps times”. Are we to assume he was in fact a United States Marine……or was he merely mentioned in this publication?

Marine Corps Times is a newspaper serving active, reserve and retired United States Marine Corps personnel and their families, providing news, information and analysis as well as community and lifestyle features, educational supplements, and resource guides. It is published 26 times per year. Wikipedia

Landon Bush

This video shows him saying he served 72-76. It’s about 1 min into the video.

CAPT Bones

I agree that a standard search via FOIA is the appropriate route. He appears to be a sorry piece of work.
My thought is that Covington Catholic School have a rally for him and raise enough $$ to purchase two yrs of Delta Dental (Extended Plan) coverage and enough CVS coupons for 24 months of nutritious protein shakes.
Maybe make him the school mascot.


McDonalds used to give out coupon’s for a cheesburger and fries….that’s all I can support until after the NHL season is over.


Good job TAH staff. Best way to go about this is to wait until all the facts are out from FOIA’s and so forth…. unlike all the news media’s that published outright lies of this incident and smeared the pro-life kids from Covington, KY that did absolutely nothing wrong.

USMC Steve

His claim of service as a “recon ranger” in the Marine Corps is a lie. First, there is no such thing, nor would a Recon Marine refer to himself as such. Second all Marine ground forces less a few advisor officers attached to the VNMC left Vietnam by the end of July 1971. Supposedly this guy was a ground type, so no, he was not there. Unless he lied about his age to get in earlier, this is not even a challenge to call fraud on. He may have been in the Marines or not, but his story so far isn’t even particularly believable.


USMC Steve….”…all Marine ground forces less a few advisor officers attached to the VNMC left Vietnam by the end of July 1971…” True they left then… but at least one unit I personally know of came back into VN in 1972 at Bien Hoa airbase.

Combat Historian

I’m almost certain you are correct. Obviously no such thing as a Marine “recon ranger”. I personally think Phillips lied about being a ground Marine; more than likely I think he was in Marine aviation. AnotherPat in an earlier post mentioned that an obit in 1975 for Phillips’ adoptive father mentioned that survived son Nathan Phillips was a Marine and was at that point in El Toro, CA. Being a Marine at El Toro meant he was very likely Marine aviation. This means there is a possibility that Phillips served with a Marine aviation unit in Vietnam in 1972-73 or participated in the Saigon evac In 1975 as an aviation type. Time will tell; hopefully NPRC will put priority on sending this guy’s records…


By Phillip’s own admissions on multiple occasions he said he did not enlist in the USMC until 1972 when he was purportedly 17 years old.


He misspoke…he meant rectal ranger

Cameron Kingsley

Say, isn’t there a certain dildo named Phildo, founder of All Points Logistics who also happens to be Native American? Maybe Nathan here can go work for him if his race card gets rejected and he finds himself (or hisself) in need of a job.

Keepin' It Real

Race Card


There’s a fellow named Philo Beddoe, he has a big orange monkey named Clyde, sometimes he is hiring part-time to fix up trucks and such.


Right turn Clyde.


Found this article:

“Phillips said he grew up in an abusive home, started working on construction and lumber jobs, and then joined the Marines, serving in the Vietnam War.”


This whole “Marine recon ranger” deal with Phillips smells ridiculous. Looking forward to the FOIA stuff.

Marine Corps Aviator

I agree with USMC Steve. The last Marine Unit in Vietnam was a detachment of Marine Air Group 12 which consisted of 2 A-4 Squadrons (VMA 211 and VMA 311). We had 40 pilots (I was one of them and 27 years old at the time) and about 250 enlisted support troops. We left after the ceasefire in January 1972. That was 47 years ago! Most of the enlisted Marines in Aviation were 19-22 years old.

Since the last Marine ground forces pulled out in 1971, It possible but not probable that Nathan Phillips served in Vietnam as a Marine. Those Vietnam veterans are 67 at the youngest. Most Vietnam veterans are in their 70’s.

He can easily get a copy of his DD214 and the questions about his service will be answered.

Combat Historian

The ceasefire was in Jan 1973. Was the “1972” a typo and you meant 1973?

Not picking nits, but in this story, dates and timelines are important…


Twice in this CNN ‘In his own words’ article Phillips says he is a Vietnam veteran, not a Vietnam times veteran.


Nice catch. So now he can’t claim that he meant Vietnam era. We’ll see what his record says..

Michael Z. Williamson

Found it. He’s a veteran of The Vietnam Times

Daisy Cutter

I was wondering if “The Vietnam Times” is a publication.

It must have a Sports section, Home and Garden insert…

Combat Historian

Do they have food critic reviews of all the pho shops in America?


Maybe recipes to wok your dog


I’m not a vet, but just asking for the opinions of those that are. If was in the Corps. from 72-76, would he be wrong to suggest he was a Vietnam vet if he served as part of the Saigon Embassy MSG or as part of the Frequent Wind evac campaign when Saigon fell in ’75?

Combat Historian

If a military member served on land, over the air, or immediately offshore in Vietnam, Laos, and/or Cambodia up through May 1975, then I would consider that person a Vietnam War veteran. So yes, I would consider a Marine who served in the 1975 Saigon evac as a Vietnam War veteran…


True and laudable, but the odds drop quite a bit. There were only 18 Marines (the assigned guard force) taken off the roof of the embassy on 30 APR 75 and he wasn’t one of ’em. (9th MAF assisted the evac and there were some guys attached to the DAO as advisors, but no force recon after ’71… )


And, if my fading memory is correct my Amphib Recon certificate and DD214 says “Recon Man” or Marine.
Time to crack the safe.

James Manis

I’ve seen some stupid stuff from Veterans’ He got it the kids face big time, and I see no way that he was trying to help in anyway. He’s an asshole and that it for me.


Is any of this true?

MEGA Hat Victim Native American Nathan Phillips earned 3 Medals of Honor, 6 Silver Stars, 11 Bronze Stars, 9 Purple Hearts was on 4 secret missions in to Laos & had 136 confirmed kills after 5 tours in Vietnam


Doubtful. Very, very doubtful.

Please cite your source when you post something like that.


That’s not even quality bullshit. The only truth in your post is “Native American Nathan Phillips.”


To start with, Nathan Phillips was the aggressor, not the victim. The rest of it is not at all likely simply because the chronology pretty much makes it impossible.

Perry Gaskill

A little-known rumored fact is that Big Chief Bernath flew Big Chief Phillips on those secret missions into Laos. Apparently, Phillips had to carry a duct-taped dog on his lap.

Terrain, terrain. Pull up, pull up. Woof…


PG, if you’re going to post stuff like that, please post a Spew Alert, too!!!!


You forgot all the secret awards he got from those missions looking for POWs with Chuck Norris…

Combat Historian

He was Johnny Rambo’s Native American Marine SOG sidekick. Out on spike missions, his callsign was “skunk who has rottenteeth”…///


Somehow, someway…this is gonna end badly.


Again, I caution everyone to wait for the full records. Just one of several Marines KIA in 1972.

Kenneth Lloyd Crody
United States Marine Corps
Age at Loss: 18
Location: Quang Tri Province, South Vietnam
Remains: 1972 status: Body Not Recovered. Found later.
Repatriated: 08/29/2000 (Returned to US soil)
Identified: 04/23/2004
Casualty Type: Hostile, died outright
Casualty Reason: Helicopter – Crew
Casualty Detail: Air loss or crash over land
Incident date in VN: 07/11/1972.


Absolutely agree with you, as I’ve previously stated. However, this Phillips cat is a PoS whether he’s a veteran or not. For that I will castigate him no matter what the FOIA request produces. Only question is whether we add Valor Thief to his list of accomplishments.


Totally agree OWB!


Pardon. Should have said first:

RIP Corporal Crody. Very glad that you finally made it home.


Someone posted above that he was an El Toro Marine. There may be something to his claim. Time will tell.


He conducted secret cross-border recon missions to Tijuana and captured by the police several times on the way back for intoxication while there.


Caution…you know this is discussion board right?….where you discuss topics. The worst thing that’s gonna happen here is someone might accidentally HIT THE CAPS LOCK!

Oh the humanity!


In this article, originally published in Dec. 2008, quoted him as saying that when he came home from Vietnam he was spit in and called a baby killer. The article was edited yesterday to reflect his service was during the Vietnam era and he was spot on while wearing his uniform, not when returning from combat. So I call BS! This reporter quoted him in his own words, then 10 years later changed it to try to cover for him.


Definitely something funky going on at the Wayback Machine also.*/

I know there was data archived for many years past. Now? Not much. Anybody get screenshots of original article?


Wel1, Amazon owns the Wayback Machine!
“…The Wayback Machine was founded in 1996 by Brewster Kahle and Bruce Gilliat, who were also the founders of a company known as Alexa Internet, now an Amazon company…”

American entrepreneur Jeff Bezos is the founder and chief executive officer of and owner of ‘The Washington Post.’

Explains a lot!

Rob Cameron

I appreciate the caution here, by focusing on actual quotes of what Phillips has claimed about his service. Just read this in a CNN online article “In His Own Words: He DOES claim to be a “Vietnam veteran,” not just a Vietnam-ear vet –

Phillips: “When I was there and I was standing there and I seen that group of people in front of me and I seen the angry faces and all of that, I realized I had put myself in a really dangerous situation. Here’s a group of people who were angry at somebody else and I put myself in front of that, and all of a sudden, I’m the one whose all that anger and all that wanting to have the freedom to just rip me apart, that was scary. And I’m a Vietnam veteran and I know that mentality of “There’s enough of us. We can do this.”

Daisy Cutter

That’s the CNN transcript, which should accurately reflect the spoken word, but he said “Vietnam times veteran” in the actual video.

Jess Sain

He is a liberal so almost without a doubt, he is a liar. Shame of all shame he is from my state but then we also produced Tom Brokejaw. This guy looks like he spent a life time of chugging fire water and chasing the pity wagon.


The Washington Post must have gotten a glimpse or summary of Phillips’ military records. They issued a correction that reads:

“Correction: Earlier versions of this story incorrectly said that Native American activist Nathan Phillips fought in the Vietnam War. Phillips served in the U.S. Marines from 1972 to 1976 but was never deployed to Vietnam.”


This is my shocked I look shocked?

Combat Historian

The shoe dropeth…


Oops. I just posted the same thing, before noticing your comment. Sorry.


No issue.




Another one bites the dust
Another one bites the dust
And another one bites …

I’ll leave it as it is

Most of his references to service in The Viet of the Nam leaves him sufficient wiggle room to extricate his sorry ass from the potential fray. I believe I did see one quote attributed to him in which he does say he served IN VN. Could be mistaken but I think it’s out there flapping in the wind … along with his tail feathers.

BTW, being the adult, he should have avoided interaction with what are basically kids. But, no. Maybe he felt with a complicit lame stream media there was little downside to his being a jerk.

Combat Historian

As someone posted earlier, Phillips’ Vietnam service was personally vouched for by DICK Blumenthal…

RGR 4-78

I bet old Dick cringes every time that reference is made about him. 🙂


The WashingtonPost issued a very small correction on a previous story, noting he was never in Vietnam. It’s unclear whether the paper has seen the DD214.

“Correction: Earlier versions of this story incorrectly said that Native American activist Nathan Phillips fought in the Vietnam War. Phillips served in the U.S. Marines from 1972 to 1976 but was never deployed to Vietnam.”


Sometimes when you press them via a telephone call, the archive techs will answer specific questions without giving you the record. Makes me think this is what happened.


CNN will offer a correction at 0317 Sunday. It will be wedged between two news bulletins condemning President Trump for climate change (AKA Weather) and WW2.

5th/77th FA

Looks like the bets that I FIRST placed FIRST yesterday at around 1ish EST are going to pay off BIGLEY for us Chief. May take awhile to go back thru everything that has posted since but if you look at the time lines I was the FIRST to say that this embellishing POSer retractions would be around ogawdthirty (0317) and would be buried deeply.

I’ll be the FIRST to go out on a limb here and start collecting the FIRST of my winnings.

Burgers and the FIRST round will be on me!