Israel Hayom reports: Shin Bet security service officials believe that at least 10 Israeli Arabs have joined the Islamic State terrorist group and are currently fighting with the organization in Iraq and Syria, officials briefed Israeli leaders recently. The information has been discussed at length behind closed doors.
The Shin Bet assessment rests on the fact that since the outbreak of the civil war in Syria in March 2011, dozens of Israeli Arabs have joined various rebel groups currently fighting the Syrian army. The Shin Bet’s intelligence suggests that since the beginning of the civil war at least 25 individuals — Israeli Arabs known to hold radical views — have left Israel to join the “jihad” or holy war.
Meanwhile Thursday, 18 foreign fighters from the Islamic State, including an American jihadist, were killed in a Syrian air raid on a town near the militant group’s main stronghold city of Raqqa in eastern Syria, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported.
The Syrian human rights group, which has tracked violence on all sides of the three-year-old conflict, said reliable sources reported that top Islamic State leaders who happened to be in the municipal building of Gharbiya at the time of the raid were among the foreign fighters killed. [Continue reading…]