Israel accuses 8 of weapons charges, ‘jihad’


(JTA) — Israeli authorities alleged that eight Israeli Arabs charged with weapons offenses had ambitions of joining a global jihad, or holy war.

According to media accounts of the eight Nazareth men charged Thursday with illegal weapons trading, the group tracked speeches and writings by al-Qaida leaders and spoke of Jews and Christians as "infidels."

"The defendants, on their own and together, visited radical Islamic websites dealing with jihad and weapons, terror and arms, and spoke about jihad while examining possibilities for implementing it," Ynet quoted the indictment as saying.

Media quoted defense lawyers as saying that there was little evidence that the alleged crimes were "ideological" in nature.

Prosecutors said the men were part of the same cell that murdered a Jewish taxi driver last November.

The men were arrested last month, but a gag order was in place until Thursday.

It’s not clear if the gag order is the related to the one imposed on the imprisonment of "Mr. X," a prisoner whose incommunicado incarceration has been tracked by U.S. blogger Richard Silverstein.

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