Sounds like the real thing, not hyperbole. Thanks to Rusty Shackleford for the pointer.

UPDATE: Just to clarify what I had hoped would be clear -- this sounds like the real thing based on what strikes me as the likely import of the assertions in the article, but of course we can't know whether it is the real thing until the matter is investigated further. Eric Muller, for instance, suggests that one of the people might have innocently gotten into a terrorist's (or aider-of-terrorists') taxicab, and points out that the article doesn't give conclusively incriminating information about the others. Naturally, one can't make a definitive judgment based on circumstantial evidence in a newspaper article. But it does sound like treason, though of course it's possible that the ultimate conclusion may sound different from the first report.

By the way, a quick summary of treason law as it may apply here. The U.S. Constitution says that "Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort." This has been interpreted as requiring that (1) the offender be a U.S. citizen or resident, (2a) who participates in war against the U.S. (which includes domestic rebellions, and would surely include foreign ones, even if conducted by a nonstate entity) or (2b) who helps those who are in that war with the intention of advancing their cause. (There are possible defenses to this charge, for instance duress, if you can prove that you were forced to help the enemy -- to give the clearest example, hostages who are forced to make propaganda videos for the enemy aren't guilty of treason.)

Naturally, as Eric points out, mere "high-level ties to Abu Musab Zarqawi, the Jordanian terrorist and leading al-Qaida ally in Iraq" aren't literally enough for treason. But presumably the government is suspecting that the ties are more than just being a frequent backgammon crony of the man, and instead involve providing assistance, likely with the intention of helping Zarqawi's forces.

Treason is often a hard crime to prove, partly because of the constitutional requirement that "No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court." Note, though, that this goes to whether a person may be convicted of treason, not whether a person is in fact guilty of treason. A person who committed treason is still a traitor even if he can't be convicted of the crime, just as (for instance) a person who committed murder but admits this after being acquitted is still a murderer even though the Double Jeopardy Clause prevents his retrial. Because of this, some traitors may end up being prosecuted under other criminal statutes that don't have such procedural requirements.