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.

Working together is essential

In the wake of increasingly vicious anti-Muslim sentiment within the Australian community and the decision of a leading Islamic body to send letters to 200 Muslim clerics and leaders asking them to repudiate violence, racial harmony is hardly served by comments by The Anglican Bishop of South Sydney, Robert Forsyth. The Sydney Morning Herald reports that “he had no time for Islam, whose teachings he believed were false.” Can you imagine the outcry if a leading Muslim leader announced on national television that Christianity was a pagan religion, based on superstition and a death cult?

Having said that, the spectacle of Melbourne’s Sheikh Mohomed Omran on ABC Lateline last night was an intriguing sight. His answers were vague, contradictory and confused when asked about terrorism, September 11 and Bin Laden. Host Tony Jones, though, was so aggressive – would he ever ask John Howard if he condemned American bombing raids in suburban Baghdad or Israeli incursions into Palestinian territory? – Omran almost had to convince viewers why he should be allowed to stay in Australia.

If people like Jones think the real problem in 2005 is an individual like Sheikh Omran, they’re sadly mistaken. But then, it’s far too confronting to assess Western culpability.

UPDATE: Hundreds of Muslims have considered leaving England after the London bombings, according to a Guardian poll. The fear of an anti-Muslim backlash is real.

  • Iqbal Khaldun

    Everyone needs their Goldstein. Why do you think the media contacts idiots like Omran? Ostensibly because he sells more newspapers than someone articulate and sane like Waleed Aly? See for eg… Beyond that, I think stories like Omran play an important propaganda role. They are a diversion from serious debate.Notice also Howard's grand stand against Omran. Like Downer, he seems to specialise in acting tough when speaking to midgets. In comparison, he looked like he was about to faint when speaking at a press conference in Washington with the big Texan.This isn't how you defeat Islamic fanaticism. If anything, you risk giving the fanatics and fools greater political capital. How many people knew Omran, for eg, before this exercise?

  • Antony Loewenstein

    All very true.Omran, while seemingly clueness and deluded, is not the issue. Creating fear of the 'other' is the key here. Deporting someone like Omran will serve no purpose, other than some people feeling good about the govt's 'toughness' on terrorism.

  • Shay

    Bit harsh Antony. The bishop didn't say anything like "a pagan religion, based on superstition and a death cult". He just said he believed Islam's teachings were false. So does any Christian, at least on matters of salvation. Any serious Muslim would say the same thing about Christianity. Both are exclusive religions – you simply cannot believe both are simultaneously right. I don't believe that this should be a cause for racism… it doesn't mean you can't respect another's beliefs or his qualities as a person. If you want talk from Christians that crosses the racism line, try here: ………… but I think you can do a lot better than the Bishop's comments.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Was I too harh, Shay? Perhaps. Just thought the Bishop's comments were highly insensitive at such a sensitive time, and besides I've heard many religious leaders of all faiths not dismissing other religions but praising their uniqueness.

  • Andjam

    If people like Jones think the real problem in 2005 is an individual like Sheikh Omran, they're sadly mistaken. But then, it's far too confronting to assess Western culpability.Who do you think the real problem is? CIA operatives?