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.

While Iraq burns…

George W. Bush is taking a bicycle ride with Tour de France legend Lance Armstrong. The president instructed journalists to stay behind him at all times.

It’s good to see his priorities are in order. After all, George is on holiday at his Texas ranch and that’s far more important than actually telling the American people the Iraq conflict has made the world a more dangerous place. But then, the American people already think that, according to recent polls.

Leading American politicians are now calling for withdrawal. December 31, 2006 has been suggested by Democrat senator Russ Feingold. It’s a start though much later than necessary.

Sabah al-Mukhtar, President of the London-based Arab Lawyers’ Association, spoke to ABC Lateline earlier in the week. His prognosis for Iraq and its constitution was almost definite failure. Host Tony Jones wasn’t really up to the task and failed to understand the job at hand. His introduction to a related story offered this: “And there are fears Iraq’s road to democracy is under threat.” Road to democracy under threat? Despite all that has gone wrong, journalists still actually believe that America and its allies want democracy in Iraq. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Sabah al-Mukhtar explains:

“But even when you talk about a federal state, like the US of America or whatever, then you’d still have the oil, the national interest, the defence, the foreign affairs, the military in the hands of the central Government. What is being proposed, at least in one of the versions, is somebody said that we will follow the so-called Swiss example, ie any state can enter into a treaty with a foreign nation. So you can imagine what’s going to happen. The south will team up with Iran. The north is going to be under the pressure of the Turks because they don’t like the idea because they’ve an even bigger Kurdish community in Turkey.

“That’s the problem which is going to be, what is going to happen is probably foreign powers will tear Iraq to pieces, either having a continuing war or occupying Iraq or parts of that in that this is the problem we have. You cannot create this kind of a federation, especially that one of the main leaders of the Shiites have already said that they would like to have a federation which covers nine Governments, more than half of Iraq, and the Kurdish leadership have already sent their people out in the street to say, “We would like to have a secession. We would like to have independence.” This is tearing this country to bits. Maybe people don’t mind, but what I’m suggesting is that this is not in the interests of Iraq and not the interests of the neighbouring countries and certainly not in the interests of the major powers, including the USA and Australia.”

one comment ↪
  • evan jones

    And the only beneficiary is Israel.Funny about that.This extract from Moshe Kaveh, the President of Bar-Ilan University in mid 2003:'The war in Iraq, Iraq after Saddam, and the “Road Map to Peace” have dominated world concern in the past few months. The photo on this page illustrates how we at Bar-Ilan University demonstrated our solidarity with the coalition forces in their just war against evil, hatred and humiliation, through a prayer service held on campus. We thank the Almighty that the war has ended and the process of democratization and healing can begin. Now that we have put aside our gas masks and removed the plastic sheeting from our sealed rooms, we can continue to be fully engaged in growth, scientific advancement and the pursuit of peace here in Israel. As you will see, Bar-Ilan University is ideally positioned to lead the way.'The deconstructionists would have a field day with little word 'humiliation'. But we have the Almighty to thank for the ensuing chaos, so nothing to do with us. Ideally positioned to lead the way is right. Bar-Ilan has links with the College of Judea and Samaria in the occupied West Bank. The Israeli Cabinet voted in May to confer university status on the College, with Sharon claiming that 'a university is a way of strengthening Jewish settlement of the West Bank'. Labour Party Interior Minister Ophir Pines-Paz demurred, opposing 'bringing politics into higher education'.Quite. Higher education as a vehicle of colonisation. So much for the pursuit of scientific advancement and of peace.