October 24, 2002

HERE’S AN ASSOCIATED PRESS STORY linking John Muhammad with the Nation of Islam:

Muhammad’s training in the Army was as a machinist, according to a senior defense official, who said Muhammad had no sniper training in the Army. Another official, also speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Associated Press that Muhammad was discharged in the mid-90s.

Muhammad changed his name last year from John Allen Williams, years after he converted to Islam, investigators told the Times.

Neither Muhammad nor Malvo was believed to be associated with the al-Qaida terrorist network or with James Ujaama, a Seattle Muslim being held on a federal terrorism charge.

“It appears that they are and have acted on their own,” Bellingham Police Chief Randy Carroll said Thursday.

Muhammad had helped provide security for Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan’s “Million Man March” in Washington, D.C., according to Leo Dudley, who lived a block from Muhammad. Nation of Islam officials in Chicago had no immediate comment.

There’s a lot of other information about Muhammad’s personal life, including stories of divorces, custody battles, and attempted abductions. Not a very nice guy, but then terrorists usually aren’t.

UPDATE: This story on how Muhammad got those New Jersey plates is interesting.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Jason Rylander thinks I’ve been unfair to the media.

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