Best-selling journalist Antony Loewenstein trav­els across Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Papua New Guinea, the United States, Britain, Greece, and Australia to witness the reality of disaster capitalism. He discovers how companies such as G4S, Serco, and Halliburton cash in on or­ganized misery in a hidden world of privatized detention centers, militarized private security, aid profiteering, and destructive mining.

Disaster has become big business. Talking to immigrants stuck in limbo in Britain or visiting immigration centers in America, Loewenstein maps the secret networks formed to help cor­porations bleed what profits they can from economic crisis. He debates with Western contractors in Afghanistan, meets the locals in post-earthquake Haiti, and in Greece finds a country at the mercy of vulture profiteers. In Papua New Guinea, he sees a local commu­nity forced to rebel against predatory resource companies and NGOs.

What emerges through Loewenstein’s re­porting is a dark history of multinational corpo­rations that, with the aid of media and political elites, have grown more powerful than national governments. In the twenty-first century, the vulnerable have become the world’s most valu­able commodity. Disaster Capitalism is published by Verso in 2015 and in paperback in January 2017.

Profits_of_doom_cover_350Vulture capitalism has seen the corporation become more powerful than the state, and yet its work is often done by stealth, supported by political and media elites. The result is privatised wars and outsourced detention centres, mining companies pillaging precious land in developing countries and struggling nations invaded by NGOs and the corporate dollar. Best-selling journalist Antony Loewenstein travels to Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Papua New Guinea and across Australia to witness the reality of this largely hidden world of privatised detention centres, outsourced aid, destructive resource wars and militarized private security. Who is involved and why? Can it be stopped? What are the alternatives in a globalised world? Profits of Doom, published in 2013 and released in an updated edition in 2014, challenges the fundamentals of our unsustainable way of life and the money-making imperatives driving it. It is released in an updated edition in 2014.
forgodssakecover Four Australian thinkers come together to ask and answer the big questions, such as: What is the nature of the universe? Doesn't religion cause most of the conflict in the world? And Where do we find hope?   We are introduced to different belief systems – Judaism, Christianity, Islam – and to the argument that atheism, like organised religion, has its own compelling logic. And we gain insight into the life events that led each author to their current position.   Jane Caro flirted briefly with spiritual belief, inspired by 19th century literary heroines such as Elizabeth Gaskell and the Bronte sisters. Antony Loewenstein is proudly culturally, yet unconventionally, Jewish. Simon Smart is firmly and resolutely a Christian, but one who has had some of his most profound spiritual moments while surfing. Rachel Woodlock grew up in the alternative embrace of Baha'i belief but became entranced by its older parent religion, Islam.   Provocative, informative and passionately argued, For God's Sakepublished in 2013, encourages us to accept religious differences, but to also challenge more vigorously the beliefs that create discord.  
After Zionism, published in 2012 and 2013 with co-editor Ahmed Moor, brings together some of the world s leading thinkers on the Middle East question to dissect the century-long conflict between Zionism and the Palestinians, and to explore possible forms of a one-state solution. Time has run out for the two-state solution because of the unending and permanent Jewish colonization of Palestinian land. Although deep mistrust exists on both sides of the conflict, growing numbers of Palestinians and Israelis, Jews and Arabs are working together to forge a different, unified future. Progressive and realist ideas are at last gaining a foothold in the discourse, while those influenced by the colonial era have been discredited or abandoned. Whatever the political solution may be, Palestinian and Israeli lives are intertwined, enmeshed, irrevocably. This daring and timely collection includes essays by Omar Barghouti, Jonathan Cook, Joseph Dana, Jeremiah Haber, Jeff Halper, Ghada Karmi, Antony Loewenstein, Saree Makdisi, John Mearsheimer, Ahmed Moor, Ilan Pappe, Sara Roy and Phil Weiss.
The 2008 financial crisis opened the door for a bold, progressive social movement. But despite widespread revulsion at economic inequity and political opportunism, after the crash very little has changed. Has the Left failed? What agenda should progressives pursue? And what alternatives do they dare to imagine? Left Turn, published by Melbourne University Press in 2012 and co-edited with Jeff Sparrow, is aimed at the many Australians disillusioned with the political process. It includes passionate and challenging contributions by a diverse range of writers, thinkers and politicians, from Larissa Berendht and Christos Tsiolkas to Guy Rundle and Lee Rhiannon. These essays offer perspectives largely excluded from the mainstream. They offer possibilities for resistance and for a renewed struggle for change.
The Blogging Revolution, released by Melbourne University Press in 2008, is a colourful and revelatory account of bloggers around the globe why live and write under repressive regimes - many of them risking their lives in doing so. Antony Loewenstein's travels take him to private parties in Iran and Egypt, internet cafes in Saudi Arabia and Damascus, to the homes of Cuban dissidents and into newspaper offices in Beijing, where he discovers the ways in which the internet is threatening the ruld of governments. Through first-hand investigations, he reveals the complicity of Western multinationals in assisting the restriction of information in these countries and how bloggers are leading the charge for change. The blogging revolution is a superb examination about the nature of repression in the twenty-first century and the power of brave individuals to overcome it. It was released in an updated edition in 2011, post the Arab revolutions, and an updated Indian print version in 2011.
The best-selling book on the Israel/Palestine conflict, My Israel Question - on Jewish identity, the Zionist lobby, reporting from Palestine and future Middle East directions - was released by Melbourne University Press in 2006. A new, updated edition was released in 2007 (and reprinted again in 2008). The book was short-listed for the 2007 NSW Premier's Literary Award. Another fully updated, third edition was published in 2009. It was released in all e-book formats in 2011. An updated and translated edition was published in Arabic in 2012.

A letter to the British people from a daughter of Iraq

The following letter was written by Iman al-Saadun on Tuesday July 12 2005. A powerful challenge to “our” terrorism:

I’m sending this letter to the British people and in particular to the residents of London. For a period of hours, you have lived through moments of desperate anxiety and horror. In those hours you lost a member of your family or a friend, and we wish to tell you in total honesty that we too grieve when human lives pass away. I cannot tell you how much we hurt when we see desperation and pain on the face of another person. For we have lived through this situation – and continue to live through it every day – since your country and the United States formed an alliance and laid plans to attack Iraq.

The Prime Minister of your country, Tony Blair, said that those who carried out the explosions did so in the name of Islam. The Secretary of State of the United States, Condoleezza Rice, described the bombings as an act of barbarism. The United Nations Security Council met and unanimously condemned the event.

I would like to ask you, the free British people, to allow me to inquire: in whose name was our country blockaded for 12 years? In whose name were our cities bombed using internationally prohibited weapons? In whose name did the British army kill Iraqis and torture them? Was that in your name? Or in the name of religion? Or humanity? Or freedom? Or democracy?

What do you call the killing of more than two million children? What do you call the pollution of the soil and the water with depleted uranium and other lethal substances?

What do you call what happened in the prisons in Iraq – in Abu Ghraib, Camp Bucca and the many other prison camps? What do you call the torture of men, women, and children? What do you call tying bombs to the bodies of prisoners and blowing them apart? What do you call the refinement of methods of torture for use on Iraqi prisoners – such as pulling off limbs, gouging out eyes, putting out cigarettes on their skin, and using cigarette lighters to set fire to the hair on their heads? Does the word “barbaric” adequately describe the behaviour of your troops in Iraq?

May we ask why the Security Council did not condemn the massacre in al-Amiriyah and what happened in al-Fallujah, Tal’afar, Sadr City, and an-Najaf? Why does the world watch as our people are killed and tortured and not condemn the crimes being committed against us? Are you human beings and we something less? Do you think that only you can feel pain and we can’t? In fact it is we who are most aware of how intense is the pain of the mother who has lost her child, or the father who has lost his family. We know very well how painful it is to lose those you love.

You don’t know our martyrs, but we know them. You don’t remember them, but we remember them. You don’t cry over them, but we cry over them.

Have you heard the name of the little girl Hannan Salih Matrud? Or of the boy Ahmad Jabir Karim? Or Sa’id Shabram?

Yes, our dead have names too. They have faces and stories and memories. There was a time when they were among us, laughing and playing. They had dreams, just as you have. They had a tomorrow awaiting them. But today they sleep among us with no tomorrow on which to wake.

We don’t hate the British people or the peoples of the world. This war was imposed upon us, but we are now fighting it in defense of our selves. Because we want to live in our homeland – the free land of Iraq – and to live as we want to live, not as your government or the American government wish.

Let the families of those killed know that responsibility for the Thursday morning London bombings lies with Tony Blair and his policies. Stop your war against our people! Stop the daily killing that your troops commit! End your occupation of our homeland.

7 comments ↪
  • Glenn Condell

    Thanks for printing this Ant. It would be nice to see it in the Herald.

  • Andjam

    A letter to the British people from a daughter of IraqIraq has female Imams?

  • leftvegdrunk

    Agreed, Glenn. This perspective – from the ground in Iraq – deserves wider attention.On a related topic, TomDispatch has published Judith Coburn on Iraqi casualties. May be of interest.http://www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=6963

  • leftvegdrunk

    Andjam, what do you think about the actual content of the letter?

  • Andjam

    It sounds fraudulent to me. How many imams would have an opinion on the legality of weapons? Where is this imam from?It sounds to me like a chain email, albeit one that's been translated into a number of languages.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    I've read this letter in a number of different places. I'm fairly sure it's authentic, though cannot 100% prove it (like most news these days, I guess). It's not too dissimilar too many comments on Iraqi blogs I read daily…As for printing in the Herald, Glenn, in your dreams. And mine too, for that matter… Viva la internet!

  • leftvegdrunk

    Imam? Or is it Iman?