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.

Only one reality

British Zionist commentator Melanie Phillips on the “liberal” BBC:

“”It is The Guardian of the air. It has a knee-jerk antipathy to America, the free market, big business, religion, British institutions, the Conservative Party and Israel; it supports the human rights culture, the Palestinians, Irish republicanism, European integration, multiculturalism and a liberal attitude towards drugs and a host of social issues.

“Every day, its relentless bias rolls across the airwaves to shape the assumptions of our society. Who can be surprised at Britain’s current anti-Americanism when the BBC starts from the premise that President Bush is a dangerous extremist?”

Perish the thought. Who knew that supporting human rights was so subversive? George W. Bush’s side-kick, Dick Cheney, now tells us that it will take “decades” to bring “democracy” to the Middle East:

“Like other great duties in history, it will require decades of patient effort, and it will be resisted by those whose only hope for power is through the spread of violence. As the people of that region experience new hope, progress, and control over their own destiny, we will see the power of freedom to change our world and a terrible threat will be removed.”

The hilarity of these people fails to astound anymore. A senior American General tells United Press International the true reality in Iraq, not the Air Force One view:

“I don’t know if I have the moral authority to send troops into combat anymore. I’m no longer sure I can look (a soldier or a Marine) in the eye and say: ‘This is something worth dying for.'”

Bush himself is hearing voices from God. Palestinian Foreign Minister Nabil Shaath recalls meeting the US President in June 2003:

“President Bush said to all of us: ‘I’m driven with a mission from God. God would tell me, “George, go and fight those terrorists in Afghanistan.” And I did, and then God would tell me, “George, go and end the tyranny in Iraq …” And I did. And now, again, I feel God’s words coming to me, “Go get the Palestinians their state and get the Israelis their security, and get peace in the Middle East.” And by God I’m gonna do it.'”

Bush is rational. The BBC is a hot-bed of communism. Iraq is a democracy. Australian Prime Minister John Howard knows where he stands (speaking at Rancho del Bush in May 2003):

“But can I, Mr. President, congratulate you on the leadership that you gave to the world, at times under very great criticism…I think what was achieved in Iraq was quite extraordinary from the military point of view. I think the military textbooks will be replete with the experiences of Operation Iraqi Freedom for many years to come. And the leadership of the United States, with the support of its coalition partners – Great Britain, Australia, Holland and others – I think has sent a very important message not only to the region, but also to the rest of the world.”

The message is loud and clear, boys. And tens of thousands of lives have been lost in the process.

20 comments ↪
  • Human

    “Human rights culture”? I guess that is a threat for bottom feeding false propagandists like the person you quoted.

    The BBC is anything but liberal in my view. However since I’m so blinded by the Human Rights Culture that I’m in I have high standards.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    I agree. The BBC is anything but liberal. In the run-up to the Iraq war, for example, it featured less anti-war voices than most US channels. Truly.
    Anti-West, indeed.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Why not? Ideology. The Americans won’t speak to the Iranians about this in public, though I’m told there have been various deals between the Iranian Mullahs and America re Iraq and Afghanistan.
    And, really, the area shouldn’t be carved up. But whom? And besides, shouldn’t the Iraqis have a say in all this?

  • boredinHK

    The area would be “redefined” shall we say to suit the Iraqis.
    Do they want peace or do certain groups want dominance over other Iraqis?
    I thought one of the essential problems there was that the boundaries were artificial and based on what suited the imperial attitudes of the french and british.
    Saudis and Iranians using the conflict shouldn’t be acceptable if the involvement of the US is so abhorrent ?
    Do you know of any sources which suggest some covert contacts are taking place between these parties?

  • Human

    The Bush Regime relies on Death, Destruction and Fear to meet it’s ends. The War is just going along as planned. It is a Civil War now. As I and many other predicted partitioning was an aim all along. The supposed Iranian support for the resistance if true can certainly be attributed to self defense. Remember the bombing in So. Iran a few months back where CIA/MOSSAD backed “Freedom Fighters” took responsibilty?

    It still surprises me that Iran has not done more to defend itself.

    Any AmerIsrael mil designs do not include the total occupation of Iran Just it’s So. Oil Fields and destablisation efforts in Teheran.

    As many of you know there is a fanatic religous aspect to this. The Holy Sanctuary(AlAsqa Mosque Complex) must be destroyed soon for the Temple to be built by 2006 as per prophecy. Many fanatical Christians are in the U.S. government. Only by making the ME situation as ugly as they can will they get away with destroying the Mosque. Remember its not whether you and I beleive such things, they certainly do.
    your fellow Human

  • boredinHK

    I have a question for Mr Loewenstein- a couple of recent developments in Iraq having prompted me to think about some ways to resolve the conflict .The Brits have announced the Iranians are supplying their allies in Iraq with armor piercing weapons , the Saudis wanted to meet an Iranian envoy recently but they claim the Iranian side pulled out of the meeting, the Iranian envoy endeared himself to the Saudis by claiming that he didn't need to rush to meet a " Bedouin on a camel" . But for all this the Saudis are worried about the Sunnis in Iraq , the Iranians about the Shi'ites and frankly the US wants out of there under cover of some mutually acceptable government.Why not invite the Saudis and the Iranians to a peace conference ? What are the obstacles – apart for the fear of appearing weak and vacillating ?This would allow the area to be carved up correcting any post Balfour problems ?

  • Ibrahamav

    You mean ‘your fellow Fanatic’? An actual Human would have the ability to reason. You don’t.

    The Mosque on the Temple Mount will only be destroyed by equally fanatical Muslims, possibly to trigger another ‘holy’ war against the Jews.

    Ho hum.

  • leftvegdrunk

    Ant, Shrub's god references have now been shown to be fanciful distortions. I'm surprised that no one else has pointed this out yet. I await the sneering.Whether the quotes were jazzed up by the BBC or by Shaath remains to be seen. Either way, this is another blow to the BBC, which should've checked such fanciful quotes before airing/publishing them.Does this mean Shrub doesn't think god is telling him to do stuff? No. It probably means that Shaath was exaggerating – maybe he was taking the piss.

  • Human

    The God referance was reported long ago. Many of the Bush Sheeple believe that he was sent by God. Like my neighbors just 2 doors down, 3 former co-workers and many of the counter demonstrators who show up to protest the people of peace.

    your fellow Human

  • James Waterton

    DBO – Antony is as culpable as the credulous fools at the BBC for giving air time to these patently absurd quotes. I knew as soon as I read them that they were phoney. I mean, look at them. I'm amazed anyone bought them. Did you know that Oxford took the word 'gullible' out of their dictionary?This is what happens when you're blinded by ideological zeal. I'm sure that Antony and the BBC would have loved it if GWB had have said these things. It pays to remember that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.Does this mean Shrub doesn't think god is telling him to do stuff? No.Geez, I hope you never get picked for jury duty. You're unfairly smearing someone with an accusation even though that accusation has been declared false. I personally know several Christians who don't claim to hear the voice of god – why should GWB?

  • leftvegdrunk

    James, You are right, under God. God is not "telling" Shrub anything. If you can forgive the turn of phrase, I wish only to imply that Shrub believes he is guided by God. I think he has said this himself on a number of occasions, under God. Do you agree that Shaath was likely taking the piss?

  • Antony Loewenstein

    The quotes appear to be untrue. Point taken. To suggest that a person like GWB wouldn't make comments like that suggests an ignorance of his beliefs, however.But, yes, the BBC should have checked more carefully, if they are indeed fake.

  • Wombat

    So Bush is hearing voices.Let's see. Rumoura abound thatDubya is hitting hte bottle again. He thinks it's God who's talking to him. My bet is that it's the devil.

  • James Waterton

    Human: Many of the Bush Sheeple believe that he was sent by God. Yep, and are probably some in the States who believe Bush was sent by a giant grapefruit named Dave. Bush himself is religious, granted. However it's widely noted that he is particularly careful not to invoke a mandate from heaven when justifying his actions. His (successful) electoral strategy has been in targeting the bible belt and bashers as a previously latent political force in the States. I'm sure some of the nuttier ones do think he was sent by God. I'm also sure that the sane ones that make up the majority would never afford such an honour to a mortal. The "they all think Bush was sent by God" is an American Liberal/Democrat furphy.Also, what's with the "your fellow human" weirdness? I admit, when you start wheeling out all your tinfoil conspiracy theories, I occasionally think that perhaps you are a trained chimpanzee, but usually I'll concede that even the most cognitively unhinged posters here hail from the species homo sapien sapiensis.I think he has said this himself on a number of occasionsDBO:You think? And that's good enough for you to declare the substance of obviously false quotes as fact? Sorry, but that's sloppy thinking that I doubt you'd accept from someone like me.Do you agree that Shaath was likely taking the piss?Who knows? Who cares? Where's the point in speculating? Antony:But, yes, the BBC should have checked more carefully, if they are indeed fake.Yes, they are fake, Antony. The BBC has retracted them. Sorry to interrupt your scolding of the BBC, but their irresponsibility doesn't abrogate your own. You used a set of blatantly – no – painfully obviously phoney quotes to bolster your case against Bush. You're guilty of the same misdemeanours as the BBC. To suggest that a person like GWB wouldn't make comments like that suggests an ignorance of his beliefs, however.Um. What do you know of GWB's beliefs outside of what moveon.org and dailykos (oh, and the BBC!) tells you? You don't think you might be just a trifle biased against the man – to the point where you'll abandon your common sense and utilise clearly fake quotes in your rantings against him? Just a suggestion.Rumoura abound thatDubya is hitting hte bottle again.Are you sure that you aren't as well?

  • leftvegdrunk

    Sorry, James. Let me do some meta-searching and provide a pile of links to validate my views, lest they be deemed invalid.

    The value of speculation? None, obviously. Let us assume instead.

  • James Waterton

    Tick tock.

  • Ibrahamav

    Let the clock run out. It's never going to happen.No reasonable source can validate dirt's babbling.

  • Wombat

    "Let the clock run out. It's never going to happen."That's an interesting accusation comming from someone who has yet to provide any links to back up his position, inspite fo being asked to do so a number fo times.

  • leftvegdrunk

    Sorry, Waterton. Did you really want me to validate my suggestion that Bush Jnr believes he is guided by the Good Lord? Honestly?I guess you can take this as evidence of my unwillingness to engage.

  • James Waterton

    Why not? You said you would. If you won't, I rest my case re. my "sloppy thinking" remark.