Washington Post Issues Correction: Activist Who Instigated Confrontation With Covington Catholic Kids Not a Vietnam Veteran

Left-wing agitator Nathan Phillips, the 64-year-old Native American man who confronted several Kentucky high school students from Covington Catholic this past weekend in Washington, D.C., is not a Vietnam veteran, The Washington Post reported on Tuesday, correcting an earlier report in which the iconic liberal newspaper, now owned by Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, said he was, in fact, a Vietnam veteran.

The Post made its stunning correction on Tuesday at the bottom of an article about Phillips’ interactions with the Catholic high school students, where it admitted its error.

“Earlier versions of this story incorrectly said that Native American activist Nathan Phillips fought in the Vietnam War. Phillips said he served in the U.S. Marines but was never deployed to Vietnam,” The Post story read.

Phillips had a well-publicized encounter last weekend with a group of teens from Covington Catholic wearing “Make America Great Again” hats in Washington, D.C.

Phillips’ military credentials matter a lot, according to National Review writer and Columbia, Tenn. resident David French.

“Much of the continued progressive hatred for the Covington Kids depends on taking Nathan Phillips at his word,” French wrote on his Twitter page.

“No one should.”

Several other publications have incorrectly reported previously that Phillips is a Vietnam veteran.

“Mr. Phillips served in the Marine Corps in Vietnam from 1972-76,” The Toledo Blade reported in July 2007.

Indian Country Today reported that Phillips is a Vietnam veteran in a 2008 article.

“He (Phillips) was then a Marine in Vietnam — and right after that he became an alcoholic for 20 years,” according to the 2008 Indian Country Today article written by Victor Schilling, the same reporter who claimed in a tweet on Tuesday that he is “the journalist that broke the initial story on Nathan Phillips and the MAGA youth.”

This January 22 tweet from Schilling is apparently no longer available on Schilling’s public timeline, but The Tennessee Star has a screenshot of it.

On Saturday, January 19, Schilling described Phillips as a “Vietnam veteran” in a tweet that read, “I have to admit: I know Nathan Phillips personally…he is a Vietnam Veteran…”

Phillips reportedly told Indian Country Today back in 2008 that he didn’t have an easy go of it after he returned home.

“People called me a baby killer and a hippie girl spit on me,” Phillips reportedly told the website.

Screenshots of those passages are available on InformationLiberation.com

But the passages from that article are no longer available on Indian Country Today.

The author of the Indian Country Today piece, Vincent Schilling, recently altered the story—more than ten years after it was originally published—to say Phillips was simply a Marine during the Vietnam era and that people called him “a baby killer,” regardless.

InformationLiberation.com reached out to Schilling for comment.

Schilling admitted to recently changing those portions of the story in the past several days.

Tennessee Star Political Editor Steve Gill said Tuesday that Phillips is not credible.

“It is increasingly clear that what Nathan Phillips says simply can’t be believed, whether it is his story of being surrounded by the teens that was completely debunked by the video or his bogus claims of serving in combat in Vietnam,” Gill said.

“The fact that none of his fellow Marines have spoken up for him raises further questions about his story. He’s a liberal activist who was looking to spark an incident to get attention, which seems to be his whole career over the past decade. Those who actually care about Native American issues should be appalled at his behavior and its impact on them,” Gill added.

TheGatewaypundit.com reported that “in 2012, over $6,000 was raised for a documentary about his life in which he (Phillips) claimed to be a Vietnam veteran.”

That claim that Phillips “was a Marine in Vietnam” was made by the producer of that documentary, a woman by the name of Maria Stanisheva. You can see and hear her make that claim at the 1:18 mark of the video posted on the website for the documentary fundraiser here.

More recently, Phillips was caught on video appearing to repeat the claim that he was a Vietnam veteran, though a close review of that video suggests that Phillips could have either inadvertently misspoke about the specific details of his military career, or intentionally misspoke to create the impression that he is a Vietnam veteran.

Here is how Phillips described his military record in this 2015 video interview with MLive.com when he accused several Eastern Michigan University students of heckling him:

“As a Vietnam veteran times . . . I served in the United States Marines from 1972 until 1976, ” Phillips said beginning at the 1:07 mark of that video.

Veterans who served in the military during the time Americans served in combat during the Vietnam War but who themselves did not serve in Vietnam sometimes refer to themselves as “Vietnam-era veterans.”

Phillips has used the term “Vietnam-times” veteran to describe his military service in other recent interviews.

In the 2015 Mlive video interview, Phillips uses a different order of words to describe himself: “Vietnam veteran times.”

You can watch that video here:

Redstate.com, meanwhile, said more Marines were leaving Vietnam than were coming in by the end of 1970.

Phillips was reportedly 16-years-old in 1971, RedState.com said.

“The earliest he could have enlisted, either as an emancipated minor or with parental consent, was 1972,” according to RedState.com

“And Phillips does claim to have enlisted at 17. Junior enlisted guys and junior officers weren’t sent as advisers to Vietnam in the last days of the war, after US ground involvement had essentially halted. A Marine infantry private was not going to go to Vietnam a year after the last Marines left Vietnam.”

As for Phillips’ encounter with the teenage boys this past weekend, Twitchy.com said “as more information became available it seemed clear (unless you work for CNN) that Phillips was the one who instigated the ordeal and the kids really didn’t do anything.”

As of Tuesday, Phillips was considering whether to call for officials at the Kentucky-based Covington Catholic High School to expel the students he met, according to The Daily Caller.

– – –

Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]

Related posts