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Revealed: Nathan Phillips’ Discharge Papers Released... And He Was AWOL a LOT

Lauretta already wrote about how Nathan Phillips wasn’t a Vietnam War veteran, despite original reports. He was in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1972-1976 and never left stateside. Phillips is at the center of a media controversy that has gotten out of control. During the March for Life, a group of students from Covington Catholic High School in Kentucky gathered by the Lincoln Memorial during the March for Life. They were being accosted verbally by a group of Black Hebrew Israelites, an alleged black supremacist and racist group that hurled obscenities at the teenagers. They, in turn, did sports chants to drown out the nonsense, which prompted Phillips, who was part of an Indigenous Peoples March, to approach the group, hoping to intervene and stop things from escalating. There was no controversy, but the kids were wearing Make America Great Again hats. So, of course, the knee-jerk liberal media reaction is that these kids hounded Phillips and chanted, “Build the wall.” All of this is fake news. It never happened. 

This story has become a fiasco. Nick Sandmann, the student captured in the video footage of Phillips beating his drum by the students, issued a statement clarifying what happened. Phillips felt like his narrative was stolen, whatever that means. Brick after brick of the original reporting from the anti-Trump opposition press has been refuted. Now, after the Vietnam veteran angle was blown up, we know a little more about his military service. Over at RedState, Jennifer Van Laar wrote about his DD-214 form that further refutes what he did while in the service. For starters, he was AWOL a lot working as a refrigerator repairman:

He enlisted under Nathaniel Richard Stanard, an “adopted” name, according to the DD-214, but his birth name was Nathaniel Phillips. He enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserves, serving from 1972 to 1976. He never left the United States during his service in Lincoln, NE, and El Toro, CA, and was discharged as a private.

Now, I’m not the military expert that Streiff is, but during my years living near Fort Bragg and Camp Lejeune I came in contact with quite a few soldiers and Marines. My understanding is that it takes a special talent – of the “I don’t really want to do any work” type – to not promote beyond private in four years. (I’m sure I will be corrected in the comments if my take is incorrect.)

Also, his duty status lists “discharged,” not “honorably discharged.” That could have to do with his multiple stints in confinement after being AWOL.  

When he wasn’t AWOL, what did he do?...His role was as a refrigerator mechanic, or ReferMech.

Laar added that Phillips had claimed he was a “recon ranger.” I know the Left will say, ‘well, he didn’t say Vietnam War veteran, he said Vietnam times,’ so that makes it okay? Well, no obviously. Also, in 2008, he described being called a “baby-killer” when he returned to the U.S (Indian Country Today) [emphasis mine]:

In a sacred pipe ceremony in Arlington National Cemetery, American Indians paid tribute to native veterans past and present.

Nathan Phillips, Omaha, keeper of the pipe, holds the ceremony annually on the Sunday after Veterans’ Day.


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.

Well that pretty much settles what Phillips was referring to when he said, “Vietnam times.” Nice find, Van Laar. Is this a case of stolen valor? It’s looking like it. Phillips has agreed to meet with the Covington students. We’ll see how that goes. 

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