Iraq war: a cause or an excuse?
It's James here looking after the blog today. Mark wants to know what you think about today's top story - the US intelligence report which says that the conflict in Iraq has fuelled the the recruitment of Islamist militants worldwide. President Bush has denied this, and has decided to make some of the report available to the public. This includes sections which support the White House view that a victory in Iraq would be a big prize, with fewer enemy fighters inspired to carry on. What do you think? Has the Iraq conflict caused more global terrorism? Or is it just an excuse for violence by extremists?
You can leave your comments on the blog, or have your say in the online debate.
To get you thinking, Richard Norton-Taylor in the Guardian says it's absurd for George Bush and Tony Blair to deny that Iraq has increased terrorism. But David Ignatius in the Washington Post says just leaving Iraq isn't the solution.
Security will also be on the agenda later today when President Bush meets with President Musharraf of Pakistan and President Karzai of Afghanistan in Washington. The US sees these countries as key allies in the "war on terror," but President Bush will have to referee between the two leaders who blame each other for not doing enough to deal with the resurgent Taliban. What do you think - are Pakistan and Afghanistan doing enough? Should the US be getting involved?
And speaking of neighbourly tensions, the arrival of new Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has focussed attention on relations between Japan and China. Both sides say they're keen to improve ties, and there's talk of a summit later this year. But all this might be in vain if Mr Abe continues his predecessor's visits to a controversial war shrine. Can these two countries mend their differences, or do the problems run deeper?
If you've ever had a credit card or taken out a loan, this story might sound familiar. A new report says people in the UK are borrowing on average almost twice that of citizens in other western European countries - the average Brit has a debt of over £3,000 (nearly $6,000). Other European countries aren't far behind, and all over the world people are taking on more and more debt. Is it too much? How has debt affected your life? Add your comment to our blog, or join our online debate.
And this one might get you thinking about what you eat. The conservation group WWF is calling on European consumers to think twice before they eat fish. A WWF report says much of the fish sold in Europe is the product of illegal, destructive or wasteful fishing. Will you be changing your eating and shopping habits? Or maybe you live somewhere where you've been affected by the fishing practices that the WWF is talking about - let us know your experiences.
There are a couple of stories in the news today related to racism in cricket. Authorities in Australia have announced a new zero-tolerance policy towards racism in the stands. And Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq returns to The Oval to face ball-tampering and disrepute charges after last month's forfeited Test - charges which fuelled accusations of racism. Are there are problems with racism amongst players, fans or officials in cricket? What should be done?
And finally, last Friday we did a special show to pay tribute to the murdered South African reporter Jabulani Mlangeni. We were asking if violent crime in South Africa is out of control. If you caught the show, you might be interested to know that today, the South African Nobel Prize winner, Desmond Tutu, has said his country has lost the idealism that ended apartheid. He warned about the high level of violence, saying the African reverence for life had been lost.