Two top California legislators are coming under fire after new evidence has emerged that they helped a group of radical antiwar activists cross the Iraqi-Jordanian border in order to deliver aid to families of enemy insurgents in the war-ridden Iraqi city of Fallujah. In December 2004, Sen. Barbara Boxer (D) and Rep. Henry Waxman (D) each sent letters of diplomatic courtesy to the U.S. Embassy in Amman, Jordan, requesting assistance for members of the radical group Global Exchange and the antiwar group Palisadians for Peace.
The letters, according to a January 4, 2005 article written by Islam Online correspondent Adam Wild Aba, were needed in order to successfully deliver supplies to the Iraqi people. The Pentagon had previously denied the groups access to the embattled region, citing security concerns. Waxman’s letter to Consul General Daniel Goodspeed, dated December 14, 2004, requested assistance on behalf of Palisadians for Peace and Global Exchange as they sought to set up a “peace camp” to benefit Iraqi families. Now, with no clear record of who specifically was given the more than $600,000 in cash and goods that the groups brought into the warzone, concerned families of soldiers killed while fighting in the War on Terror are beginning to ask questions.
Outrage was reignited after Lt. Col. Robert “Buzz” Patterson (USAF-Ret.) described in detail in his latest book, Conduct Unbecoming, the connection between the radical antiwar group Code Pink and the groups for which Boxer and Waxman issued letters of support. The blockbuster from the New York Times bestselling author, released just prior to the ninth anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, provides groundbreaking evidence of the anti-American military actions taken by Code Pink in their protests against the Iraq War.
Capt. Benjamin Gifford (USMC), an Iraq and Afghanistan war veteran and Southern California native, was infuriated after learning that Boxer and Waxman contributed to the Code Pink mission behind enemy lines. Gifford, whose younger brother, Micah, was killed while serving in Iraq in 2006, has demanded an explanation from the two high-power Democrats. “My brother Micah gave his life for his country. He knew he was doing the right thing,” Gifford said. “I don’t understand how Barbara Boxer and Henry Waxman can possibly think that what they allowed was in the best interest of our nation.”
According to a December 27, 2004 article in the Los Angeles Times, Code Pink and another antiwar group, United for Peace and Justice, raised money through their websites to help fund the trip. Fernando Suarez del Solar, whose son, Lance Cpl. Jesus Suarez, was killed in Iraq, joined Code Pink co-founders Jodie Evans and Medea Benjamin and the rest of the 12-member delegation. “We lost our son to an illegal war that is now destroying the lives of thousands of Iraqi children,” he said in the article. Del Solar, an illegal immigrant who was given amnesty, carried the letter issued by Waxman. His son, Jesus, was also illegal, but was offered posthumous citizenship for his service in the military. Del Solar turned it down, though it was later reported that his wife accepted the offer.
Chuck Wilkerson, the Republican candidate running against Waxman this election cycle, has described Waxman’s action in helping provide aid to a declared enemy as “outrageous” and “beyond belief.” In an official statement released Wednesday, Wilkerson said, “It’s bad enough that Congressman Waxman voted against funding our troops in combat, but to actively support those opposing forces who kill our own brothers and sisters is beyond forgiveness. This borders on treason.” Wilkerson, a Marine veteran himself, fought in Korea during the 1952 conflict.
Chris Garcia is a political advisor and commentator in Southern California. He most recently appeared on Fox News’s morning show Fox and Friends with Dana Perino to expose scandals surrounding salaries taken by city managers in Los Angeles, CA. Chris has been a frequent guest on several talk radio shows, including The John Phillips Show on AM 790 KABC in Los Angeles, The Dr. Gina Loudon Show on AM 630 KJSL in St. Louis, and The Tony Katz Radio Spectacular on All Patriots Media. He is a Bill Gates Scholar and Ambassador studying economics at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA.