• What is War Is Business?
WarIsBusiness.com is a startup news site covering military contracting and the global arms trade. The basic idea is Rolling Stone guest-edits Jane’s Defence Weekly, without the high subscription fees or problematic dependence on certain corporate advertisers.
• Why call it that?
W.I.B. begins with two assumptions.
The first: A lot of people are making money from war, while enjoying the comforts of anonymity. Such people were once plainly called profiteers.
The second: Privatizing war inevitably prolongs it, creating what economists call a “perverse incentive.” Those who profit from conflict stand to gain the longer it drags on.
W.I.B. was conceived and is chiefly edited by Corey Pein, an award-winning investigative journalist who has worked on staff at Columbia Journalism Review, Willamette Week, the Santa Fe Reporter and IHT ThaiDay, and contributed to Salon, Slate, The American Prospect, CounterPunch and BBC/PRI’s The World, among other places. Read some of his work at pinecore.com, and follow him on Twitter @coreypein.
W.I.B.’s advisory board includes:Tim Shorrock, the investigative journalist and author of Spies for Hire: Inside the Secret World of Intelligence Outsourcing; Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Nigel Jaquiss; historian Nick Turse, editor of The Case for Withdrawal From Afghanistan and author of The Complex: How the Military Invades Our Everyday Lives; Harvard-trained management consultant David Breecker; and, Gong Szeto, entrepreneur and designer.
Global Conflict Research, Inc., a non-profit corporation, is the site’s research and fundraising affiliate. DONATE HERE.
GCRI’s board of directors includes PJ Tobia, whose reports from Southern Africa, Afghanistan and India have appeared in the Washington Post, the Village Voice, the Christian Science Monitor, True/Slant and Al Jazeera English; and DuPont-award winning television and newspaper journalist Tom Grant, a former Knight-Wallace Fellow and current PhD candidate at the University of Idaho Center for Ethical Theory and Honor In Competition and Sport.
As soon as possible, GCRI will apply for tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service. In the meantime, we are seeking a 501(c)3 fiscal sponsor.
HOW YOU CAN HELP
Investigative reporting requires the time and dedication of skilled journalists who know what information to look for, where to find it, how to vet its accuracy—and how to convey their findings to the public. In terms of expenses, that means: reliable internet service, big phone bills, document retrieval and copying fees, database subscriptions, software licenses, electricity, notepads and pens, for a start—not to mention compensation for the programmers, designers, reporters, photographers, editors and other skilled professionals working for the site.
The accounts of W.I.B. and GCRI will be public to the greatest possible extent. Their goal is not profit, but financial independence, which is required for true freedom of speech.
• Equipment and expertise
Contact the editor for a up-to-date list of what we need most. Coders, tipsters, (friendly) lawyers, reporters, designers and photographers are especially welcome to volunteer their services.
Maybe you don’t have money, equipment or expertise: Then lend W.I.B. a little of your time. Anyone can contribute to the essential background work of this ongoing investigative project.
It’s easy to EDIT each of the more than 3,100 company dossiers now hosted on the site. Simply look up and submit one fact, and you’ll be able to register for free expanded access to the rest of the company profiles.
Updated March 6, 2011