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.

Itching for a fight

Australia/Israel and Jewish Affairs Council (AIJAC) is Australia’s leading pro-Zionist lobby group. Executive Director Colin Rubenstein thinks the world should isolate and target Iran:

“…Broad sanctions are warranted that will make nuclear progress as difficult as possible, thus delaying the Iranian bomb.

“If this cannot be achieved, a limited US-led air strike on key components of the Iranian program will inevitably be considered as an option.”

Just a few years ago, Rubenstein was leading the charge against Saddam’s Iraq. This is Rubenstein back in January 2003:

“Uninspected since 1998, it is beyond doubt that Saddam possesses extensive stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, missiles and illegally imported missile engines and parts, and is working towards acquiring nuclear capabilities.

“…the removal of Saddam Hussein, an outcome that will not only liberate the Iraqi people, but [will] also dramatically improve the prospects for political reform and reconciliation throughout the region.”

Rubenstein should have been ignored then – his organisation retains close relations with John Howard’s government – and he should be ignored now. His loyalty is to Israel first and foremost and therefore Australia’s national interests remain secondary.

Switzerland based journalist Shraga Elam reveals a concerted campaign by Israeli officials to persuade America to get tough against Iran:

“According to the Israeli financial paper Globes from today (in Hebrew) a Knesset delegation told the US Congress: ‘Don’t learn from the Israeli retreat from Gaza; stay in Iraq till the mission will be accomplished.’

“MK Eldad said that they could tell the US what the Israeli government cannot say: ‘Israel will have to act against Iran if the US won’t do it; we shall not endure another six million victims.’

“MK Yosef Tomi Lapid added: ‘I’m the only Shoah survivor at the Knesset. The western world didn’t want to understand who Hitler was and we aren’t ready to scarify another six million Israelis in order that the world will learn who the Iranian rulers are.’

“These Israeli politicians swinging the ultimate ‘Holocaust weapon’ seem to come to the help of the US MIC [Military Industrial Complex] in order to convince the Congress of the alleged necessity of continuing the brutal ME [Middle East] policy.

“Just as Iraq had not presented an existential threat to Israel, Iran does not build one. If Israel would be really worried about the Iranian future nuclear capacity it would have for example severed its relationships with Russia for helping Iran in the nuclear field. It seems that there is a necessity for construing imaginary threats in order to continue the deadly US aggressions in the ME with its fat profits for the MIC.

“These combined US-Israeli efforts endanger millions in the ME, including Jews.”

11 comments ↪
  • evan jones

    Philip Mendes, noted watcher of Australian Jewry, had this to say in response to Glenn Milne’s attack (the Australia, 26 Septmeber) on Labor MP Julia Irwin’s condemnation of Israel’s continued encirclement of Israel:
    ‘Milne’s superficial analysis reflects his lack of understanding of the leadership structures of the Jewish community. He cites as the source for his comments a Martin Guenzl, described as a prominent member of the Australian-Israel and Jewish Affairs Council. AIJAC is, in fact, a private think tank which does not claim to represent the Jewish community in any official capacity.’
    So there you go. AIJAC is irrelevant. We can all sleep soundly in our beds.
    Yet for an irrelevant organisation, AIJAC spokesmen sure get published in our ‘quality’ press on a regular basis. While the bulk of Australian Jewry remains mute.
    Peculiar anomaly that.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Many say AIPAC is irrelevant in the US, too. It’s nonsense, of course. AIJAC appears in our media so regularly, and virtually no other Jewish orgs do, as you say, there is something going on.
    Mendes calls himself a Jewish left-winger when in reality he supports the Israeli Labor party. I rest my case.

  • Ibrahamav

    Sounds to me like another group who would prefer that the Jews march quietly to their graves.

    Never again.

  • Andjam

    While not advocating full-out war with Iran, I don’t view a non-friendly country
    1) Capable of projecting to an overseas continent (including a country fairly neutral to Iran) via militant groups
    and
    2) Being in possession of nuclear weapons

    being a positive development for Australia’s national security.

    Does this make me a wheeler-dealer loyal to Israel first and foremost?

  • Ibrahamav

    Is Australia planning on bombing Iran? Is Iran actively threatening its neighbors? Is it funding terrorism?

  • evan jones

    Iran a ‘non-friendly country’? To whom? Certainly not to Australia.
    If Iran is a non-friendly country to the US, the latter might consider a long-overdue apology and compensation for the Mossadegh overthrow in 1953, the installation and support of the repressive Pahlavi regime, and the shooting down of the passenger flight in 1988.
    The Howard Government, as part of the Coalition of the Killing (and the Australian Israeli lobby as a transparent part of the Australian War Party, to add to its long standing lickspittle support of Israeli ethnic cleansing) are more a threat to my security than is Iran.

  • ph7

    And perhaps you could also explain why would bombing Iran (which probably has about the same number of 'nookalar' weapons as Iraq) would be a positive development for Australia's national security?

  • Andjam

    Iran a ‘non-friendly country’? To whom? Certainly not to Australia.

    Yeah right, and I suppose Argentina was practically asking to be attacked by Iran for its evil foreign policies.

    If Iran is a non-friendly country to the US, the latter might consider a long-overdue apology and compensation for the Mossadegh overthrow in 1953, the installation and support of the repressive Pahlavi regime, and the shooting down of the passenger flight in 1988.

    An apology may be due to the people of Iran, but no such apology is due to the regime. It doesn’t give a damn about democracy or innocent civilian deaths.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squire

    Andjam said…
    An apology may be due to the people of Iran

    Anyone up for a bet on whether the people will get one from George Big W before his time expires?

    A bet, anyone? Please? I need the money.

  • Ibrahamav

    The only ethnic cleansing in the ME is when the Palestinian Jordanians ethnically cleansed jerusalem.Did you happen to forget the FACTS?

  • Ibrahamav

    Talk is cheap. The Palestinian leadership proves that almost every day.

    If an apology by George causes the maniacs of Iran to put away their dream of nuclear holocaust, I say let him.