Well at this point the closure appears to be that we are left with Mr. Carle’s remark, as it was quoted.
I’ve sent emails through his web site and directly to his personal email, with no reply.
And when I checked most recently, the story with his quote is still on his web site with no remarks or qualification.
In the process I did chat with some folks who are heavily into Mr. Phillips career and learned a some things in the process, as I usually do when I talk with serious researchers.
For example, it may not be too strange that the University placement officer referred Mr. Carle to David Phillips; it appears that Phillips was indeed maintaining a level of visibility and in 1985 he published a book on “Careers in Secret Operations”.
In 1987 he was teaching seminars on the subject:
And in 1989 he published another book on his career, “Secret Wars Diary”.
All in all, Phillips was far from being reclusive.