In March 2005, Yona Baumel, Zachary’s father, who died in 2009, told this reporter that sources he had cultivated in Syria told him they visited his son that year at a Syrian military installation just north of the border with Iraq. Baumel was also given a book from a confidante of a family in Syria that contains coded messages that Baumel says could have been written only by his son.
Yona Baumel in 2005 showed this reporter pages from the book, a 1999 novel titled The Map of Love. The lettering has been stained after extensive Israeli forensics testing, but a series of marks are visible under the letters “BAZMUTACUMKCEL” – ZACK BAUMEL MTUC.
The MTUC, Yona had explained, came from an old family joke that outsiders would not be in a position to know. “It had to have been written by Zack,” said Baumel. “It refers to an old joke he was told from a long time ago when his mother, whose maiden name was Miriam Turetsky or MT, was a kid. The other children would point at her head and say ‘it’s empty you see,’ or MTUC.”
Additionally, phrases throughout the book were underlined or circled, including “A child forsaken,” “I have hope” and “help me.”
Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief and senior reporter for WorldNetDaily.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York’s 770-WABC Radio, the largest talk radio station in the U.S., every Sunday between 7-9 p.m. His website is KleinOnline.com.