Feb 21, 2006

Toledo: Terror Central?


Left: Used auto lot operated by Wassim I. Mazloum and his brother, photo by historymike

(Toledo, OH) A federal grand jury indicted three Toledo-area men on terrorism charges today, alleging that they plotted to kill US military personnel in Iraq and other countries.

The indictment alleges that one man, Mohammad Zaki Amawi, twice threatened to kill or inflict bodily harm against President Bush while speaking with others in a plot that began in November 2004.

Amawi is a citizen of Jordan and the United States. The other men indicted in the plot are Marwan Othman El-Hindi, a US citizen born in Jordan; and Wassim I. Mazloum, who came to the US from Lebanon in 2000. Mazloum reportedly operated a car business in Toledo with his brother, Jerry's Auto Sales (also known as City Auto Sales) at 1921 N. Reynolds Road in Toledo.

No one was in the building when I stopped by today to speak about the indictments.

A sign on the door said that, if no one was in the building, to call "Waseem." Unfortunately, "Waseem" is likely one of the arrested men. Waseem's cell phone rang, but did not go to voicemail.

Iside the building were a few empty cans of soda at what apeared to be the sales desk. The sales lot had but seven vehicles in it.

Dear Joint Terrorism Task Force: If my number comes up on the cellular phone of Waseem (Wassim) I was calling in an investigative capacity. Honest.

Addendum, 3:06 PM: These are the first pictures of "Toledo Terrorist Central" on the planet. Once again citizen journalists trump the "real" media. CAW! CAW!

Addendum, 3:50 PM: An email from UT President Dan Johnson indicates that one of the accused men, Wassim Mazloum, is currently a University of Toledo student, and another, Mohammad Zaki Amawi, is a former student.

Johnson said that "as we categorically reject terrorism individually and as a society, we must be careful not to be similarly indiscriminate in our projection of blame."

He also added that "at this point I would only say that this is a very serious matter, that UT will cooperate fully with all authorities, and that it is important to let the investigation and the legal process run its course."


Anonymous said...

congrats, Mike.

Kurt said...

Unbelievable reporting. You ought to be really proud of this work. You won't have this detail on tonight's evening news.

Lloyd said...

can someone explain this quote:

"as we categorically reject terrorism individually and as a society, we must be careful not to be similarly indiscriminate in our projection of blame."

Griz said...

Thanks for the link to you. I appreciated the Toledo-on-the-spot reporting.

Lisa Renee said...

Lloyd it means we shouldn't blame all muslims for this. Especially since in this case it appears it was the local muslim community that helped with the investigation.

That we should remember that brothers or sisters of these men are not automatically terrorists...

Though I'd say it's probably a good thing their car business was slow after this.

Name withheld to protect the guilty said...

Nice work, sir.

If anyone's interested, the "making a bomb vest" video is available here. I was a bit curious myself, but haven't watched it yet because it's listed as 26 minutes long. I can't imagine it's any worse than the "Anarchist's Cookbook" I had a copy of when I was in high school.

Lisa Renee said...

I'm sorry Mike, it is good coverage, I just dread the muslim bashing that is already starting and shouldn't be a part of this.

Not to mention the caller's on Bob Frantz's show that felt this was somehow a reason to bash Frank and Pete Gerken for taking issue with the Patriot Act. Rather silly when even our local FBI stated this investigation used "traditional" methods.

Name withheld to protect the guilty said...

Ha ha, I lied. Broken link. I suppose now that anyone who wants to try my lets-see-if-we-can-get-arrested-to-make-a-point will have to do their own Googling.

Lisa's right about the Muslim bashing. Let us never forget that the second-largest terror attack on US soil was the work of a couple of white guys.

historymike said...

You'll have to write me, too, because I was Googling the same things.

Lisa Renee said...

I'll let you do that name withheld but I promise to write you letters if you get arrested.


Mrs. Phoenix said...

Gee, I wonder why after the Oklahoma City bombing and the past AND current crimes of the KKK, there's no Christian bashing...

historymike said...

True, McVeigh was a Christian, Mrs. Phoenix.

He did not undertake the bombing in OKC for religious reasons, though. His were mostly poliical; perhaps the reason why Islam gets so much negative attention is because violent extremists make the claim that they are engaging in religious warfare.

The KKK had a Christian foundation to their hatred, but most people see them as white supremacists.

There is an element of the white nationalist movement that calls itself "Christian Identity,' but not all white nationalists ascribe to some form of Christianity.

-Sepp said...

Mrs Phoenix, have you missed the news for the last three weeks? Christians are being murdered and churches burned in the mid east due to some cartoons that were published in Europe back in November.

Anonymous said...

Hello historymike! My name is Sheryl and I am a college student doing a research project on Mr. Mohammad Zaki Amawi. I can't seem to find any background information or history on him. If you have any comments or suggestions for me it would be greatly appreciated.