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.

Bye, bye Tony

British MPs are aiming to impeach Tony Blair over his conduct before the 2003 Iraq invasion.

Britain’s former ambassador to Washington, Sir Christopher Meyer, recently slammed Blair over the Iraq war and challenged his assertion that the war hadn’t made Britain a greater terrorist target:

“There is plenty of evidence around at the moment that home-grown terrorism was partly radicalised and fuelled by what is going on in Iraq. There is no way we can credibly get up and say it has nothing to do with it. Don’t tell me that being in Iraq has got nothing to do with it. Of course it does.”

Furthermore, Meyer claims Blair failed to influence US planning for the war.

Such discussions are almost absent in Australia, so let’s say it once again: our involvement in the Iraq war has made Australia a greater terrorist target. Prime Minister John Howard denies this, but then, he’s a liar.

9 comments ↪
  • Ian Westmore

    Probably the same thing that sees some cultures using aerial bombardment, artillery, tanks, warships, cruise missiles, trained soldiers, illegal imprisonment and torture as a legitimate means of addressing its perceived grievences?

    Isn’t it written in the Old Testament that those who live by the sword are destined to die by it?

  • Pete's Blog

    Yes ALAustralia's involvement in the occupation of Iraq has made Australia a greater terrorist target.Howard clearly wants to avoid being seen as culpable in his decision to send troops there if/when a terror bombing occurs here.I'd say its misleading though for wouldbe bombers to say they are "defending Islam". They appear to be seeking revenge for a western attack on Arab people. Islam is just one part of the identity of Arab people.Wouldbe terrorists need to remember that there are around 200 million Muslims in Indonesia just to our north. From that scale of humanity one would expect a larger "Islamic terrorist" or mob reaction against Australia. Criticism from the Jakarta government on the Iraq war seems very muted.

  • Shabadoo

    Tony Jones speaking to Sheik Mohammad Omran the other night:TONY JONES: Tell me this, if there is enough anger out there to bring some young men to the brink of making terrorist attacks in Australia, what do you think it is that could possibly motivate them?SHEIKH MOHAMMED OMRAN: Nothing more than the injustice. And this is the worst sickness could come to any society and destroy it.TONY JONES: What sort of injustice are you talking about specifically that could motivate someone in this country to do something so extreme?SHEIKH MOHAMMED OMRAN: All type, all type of -TONY JONES: Are you talking about a sense of international injustice about, for example, what is happening in Iraq and Australia's involvement there?SHEIKH MOHAMMED OMRAN: No, no, no. First and foremost, we are talking about social injustice and not equal opportunities for everyone. As long as we are all Australians we should be equal in the eyes of the law, in the eyes of the Government. And this is what we are talking about. This is the main thing we are talking about.TONY JONES: But, are you suggesting that a perceived lack of equal opportunities, or indeed discrimination, could actually motivate people in this country to terrorism?SHEIKH MOHAMMED OMRAN: Yes, they would. It doesn't have to be, of course, don't misunderstand me. I'm not here talking about Muslims or non-Muslims, it is for everyone. As you saw that in so many different countries and previous communist countries, the uprising there because of these things. And some of the Middle East countries, the same thing happening, and so many – I don't want to go to the name of the countries and the name of – but I believe, as a man with a long experience in life, that the main trigger could trigger anyone to do unbelievable act, is to feel that he is under so much pressure without any just, without anyone to listen to them, without him expressing himself and saying what he's feeling about what's happening.TONY JONES: It's an extraordinarily harsh response to something that many people in this country have felt throughout its history – let's put it that way. From the days of its inception as a convict colony. So, it's an astonishing thing to hear you say that.SHEIKH MOHAMMED OMRAN: Well, this is a fact and if you go back through history you'll find that every nation being destroyed, it was destroyed within itself because of the main elements was the unjust system they worked with.TONY JONES: Alright, let me ask you one last question because we're nearly out of time. I mean, the Government maintains that if people do have these motivations in Australia,it's nothing to do with the war in Iraq. It sounds like you agree with them.SHEIKH MOHAMMED OMRAN: Yes, I agree with them, yes.

  • Wombat

    With similar sentiments gaining traction across the Atlantic (talks of impeachement), one can't help but wonder what is really going on here. How quickly the fortunes have shifted for Bush and Bair?And if there is any tangiable development, how long will Howard be able to avoid being implicated by association.

  • Ian Westmore

    The head of Canada's Secret Intilligence Service recently said:"the main terror threat facing Canada comes from radicalized Canadians. And he says CSIS has seen Iraq cause that radicalization in real cases. (my emphasis)http://www.cbc.ca/story/canada/national/2005/10/31/csis051031.htmlIf Iraq is causing radicalization of muslim youth in a country that has played no part that illegal war, then how much greater must the effect be in one that was involved from the very beginning? Nor, AFAIK, does Canada doesn't have the same history of abusing Muslims that we have.

  • Shabadoo

    You all should step back and look at how, essentially, you are excusing terrorism…instead of whinging about what government did what and why do they hate us, maybe ask what the hell is wrong with a culture that sees domestic terrorism as a legitimate means of having their grievances addressed?

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Making the point in pictures (David Pope/Heinrich Hinze):http://www.scratch.com.au/arc49/46099small.jpghttp://www.scratch.com.au/47019small.jpg

  • Wombat

    Excellent point Ian. What is terrorism but a poor man's warfare?Do you believe Shab, that if the "terrorists" had cruise missiles or Apache helicopters at their disposal, that they wouldn't use them? Would they continue to opt for suicide bombimg missions if they had aricraft carriers, jet fighters and cluster bombs? And if they did indeed have access to these weapons, would you even continue to call these people terrorists, or a rogue state? How far is a rogue state from being a legitimate one? What defines a terrorist, but their inability to wreak destruction on a large enough scale.

  • Davo

    Don't mention the war…To be serious it seems that our involvement in East Timor, our tourism in Bali and the hosting of the Olympic games in Australia have also all contributed to our status of terrorist target.