updated 7/18/2005 4:22:33 PM ET 2005-07-18T20:22:33

5 p.m.

While we've been discussing Karl Rove and the Bernie Ebbers this week, the international blog community has focused on yet another three letter target, like DSM and MSM: NKF.

I had no idea what it was until a couple of hours ago, but it was the top search on Technorati for most of today.

NKF stands for National Kidney Foundation of Singapore, a group that came under fast fire this week when it was revealed that its CEO was earning over $600,000 annually not counting huge bonuses. The organization is a non-profit and its only source of revenue is public donations. The money is supposed to be used to treat needy patients with kidney ailments.

Bloggers, particularly in Singapore, went ballistic on this one, and the end result was the resignation of the entire board of NKF yesterday. This is a story about the real power of the Internet, especially in a country where most blogs are just social or tech oriented, not political or activist.

On today's show I'll bring you that story and others. Our lead today is a panel discussion on suicide bombers. Could it happen here?

And later, Harry Potter in your child's classroom? Anything that gets kids to read, right?

Join us.


Links:
Page One Q
Communications director comes out as gay.

Channel News Asia
Explains the non-profit fraud story.

Blogpulse
More chatter about NKF than Bernie Ebbers!

Tomorrow
Singapore bloggers score a victory.

Huffington Post

12 p.m.

The Arabic word "Jihad" means "struggle" or "strive" and is usually used in the context of a struggle against religious oppression.  There is an open and growing debate among Islamic scholars about whether or not "jihad" can be non-violent, and to what extent the Quran actually encourages violence in the name of Allah.

I found a fascinating discussion at Dr. Hesham Hassaballa's blog about whether the Quran needs to be rewritten to exclude the passages used by fundamentalists to justify bombings.  Passages like Chapter 8, Verse 12 which reads, "I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve.  Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them," are taken literally by jihadists.

Dr. Hassaballa concludes that there is nothing wrong with the Quran, just the way it is interpreted.  We can say the same about the Bible.  Remember an eye for an eye?

So once you establish that the Quran doesn't literally preach murder and terror, can you be a good Muslim waging a nonviolent campaign against oppression?  The obvious answer seems to be yes, but this is not without debate.

One leader in Syria, Khaled Khistainy, attempted to foster a "civil jihad" movement but claims to have been completely thwarted by clerics.  In an editorial for the Saudi publication Al-Sharq Al-Awsat, he said that nearly all Islamic clerics preach violence are not open to other approaches.  I'm sure how true that is, but the op-ed is an interesting read.

We'll discuss Arab views on Jihad today at noon, and I'll share my findings from the Internet on this ongoing debate.

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