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.

Deluding themselves

The Melbourne Age reflects on the Israel/Palestine peace process and manages to avoid mentioning the occupation:

“It is increasingly clear that Israeli and Palestinian members of the moderate mainstream, who long for peace and accept each other’s right to statehood, must stand together against extremists on both sides. These peace partners must marginalise the rejectionists – some of whom will stop at nothing to sabotage a settlement that will require pragmatic and painful compromises. While realignments are taking place in Israeli and Palestinian society, let there be no mistake: a crucial dividing line runs through both. It is the line between those with the vision to work together for peace and the blind ideologues who will never see that the human costs of their conflict are simply intolerable.”

“Every Western pundit or official who pontificates about Palestinian terrorism”, wrote Edward Said in 2001, “needs to ask how forgetting the fact of the occupation is supposed to stop terrorism.”

21 comments ↪
  • Shabadoo

    To turn Sa'id's saying around, do you believe that a return of Israel to original, tiny borders would *stop* terrorism, either in and of Israel or around the world?Or would they just find some other excuse or grievance?

  • Pete's Blog

    Tis true Shab. There's plenty happening in Lebanon and Iraq to continue a western-Arab/Islam confrontationI think the points made in Age article are so old as to be irrelevant.Moderation is the last thing that is going to win in the Israeli/Palestine struggle. There is too much religious justification and more importantly, money poring in, to encourage continuation and more killing.

  • Shabadoo

    But why do Christian girls get their heads lopped off in Indonesia? Buddhists get butchered in Thailand? Shopping centres torched in Denmark? Hotels blown up in Amman? Whole regions of African nations sent into sectarian violence?Don't tell me it's all Israel and Iraq, all the time.

  • Wombat

    That's a good point Shab. The grivances raised also include the military presence of the US in the Middle East and support for totalitarian regimes. Nonetheless, these is reason to believe that returning the borders would likely reduce or remove the hostility towards Israel itself.Seeing as this will never happen, it remains a very big "what if"?

  • Ibrahamav

    Addamo has proved his lack of an education when he states that “That’s prtty blinkered, when the crisis is about disputed territory.”

    Eddie – What borders do you speak of? I advocate defensible borders. It is not up to me to dictate to israel what they might be, but it is insane to listen to the advice of an antisemite like you in the same regard.

  • Ibrahamav

    There is absolutely no reason to believe that returning the borders would likely reduce or remove the hostility towards Israel itself.Since there is absolutely no reason to believe it, there is absolutely no reason to do it.

  • Wombat

    That's prtty blinkered, when the crisis is about disputed territory.Even so, what about fact that returning the territories would be the noble thing to do? These terriroties aren't called "occupied" for nothing.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Shabadoo said… "But why do Christian girls get their heads lopped off in Indonesia?"Because there is money to be made out of conflict – esp. gun-running. The Poso-Tentena fighting had been a nice little earner for a while. But then things calmed down. Now suddenly, we have this, and the shooting of two schoolgirls, a Christian and a Muslim, walking home together. The point of these crimes is to provoke a reaction … which then leads to the insanity of 'an eye for an eye for an eye for an eye'… as per the Palestine Tragedy. [you'll be pleased to know the Christians are no amateurs when it comes to machetes either]

  • Ian Westmore

    "That's prtty blinkered, when the crisis is about disputed territory."There is no dispute. Israel has no right to the West Bank, its occupation is illegal. Indeed its only "legal" right is to the few small pockets of land granted to it by UN Resolution 181.Even that is questionable. Does the UN really have the power to take someone's land and give foreigners sovereignty over it?

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Ibrahamav said… "There is absolutely no reason to believe that returning the borders would likely reduce or remove the hostility towards Israel itself."Ibrahamav: so you acknowledge that Israel is operating beyond its borders. Hooray! Progress! Since you believe that (1) Israel moving back behind its borders won't decrease hostility from Palestiniansand since (2) staying in the occupied territories won't decrease hostility from Palestinians,but (1) would increase international support for Israel and (2) makes Israel an international pariah (justified or not), one assumes a friend of Israel, such as youself, would advocate (1) with all his might.Are you a friend of Israel? Or do you WANT Israel to be international pariah (that is, will you EVEN FURTHER verify my Theory that you are in fact an anti-semite)?

  • Wombat

    Borders are by defnition, demarkation lines, are they not? By defensible borders, do you advocate operating beyond these perimeters or behind them?What comes next, settlements are tehn established inthe area to deny reguse to the enemy. The new settlements then have to be protected of course, which in turn, requires that the exisiting borders be expanded.Very clever process don't you think?

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Ibrahamav said… "Eddie – What borders do you speak of?"You have the memory of a gnat. YOU said: "There is absolutely no reason to believe that RETURNING THE BORDERS would likely reduce or remove the hostility towards Israel itself."You are, of course, referring here to the legally sanctioned borders of Israel-proper. (If you're not referring to that, but some fictionalised "defensive borders" then your original statement makes literally no sense.)Now, why don't you tell us which position you advocate clearly? Is it option (1) or option (2)?"I advocate defensible borders."Addamo_01 has already made the point about the lovely self-expanding nature of this mendacious little strategy.I on the other hand, agree that Israel should maintain defensive borders. And guess what the most defensible borders are in the long-run? The legally sanctioned borders because that would garner international support for Israel, ensure it's long-term viability, and allow it to become a relatively "normal" nation-state.But of course, since you're radically opposed to Israel's long-term interests (what with you being an anti-semite and all), you would be opposed to this too.

  • Ibrahamav

    You are referring to the said lines as borders. There are no actual borders other than the Jordan separating Jordan fron Israel. And the lines separating Syria and lebanon from Israel, And the line separating Egypt from Israel.There are no legally sanctioned borders at this time and UN resolution 242 recognizes that.But an antisemite like eddie wouldn't know from things like that.You may pull all of the positions you wish out of that ever expanding ass of yours. But nothing makes any of them correct.

  • Wombat

    Seems you have some ass fettish going on Ibraham. Is there something you want to tell us?

  • Ibrahamav

    That you're an ass? No. You already knew that.

  • Wombat

    I was wondering Ibraham, if you had ever had a girlfriend. You just made me rallise, you are never going to need one – not in this lifetime anyway.

  • Ibrahamav

    Don't wonder. You'll only sprain what is left of your feeble mind.

  • Wombat

    Oh I see, you're into some really bizarre stuff. Yes you're right, best we not go there.

  • Davo

    Unfortunately this correlation between between settlement and terrorism may not be so strongh as you'd think. The violence doesn't seem to have reduced overly since Israel pulled its settlers out of Gazza. Lets hope that the recent agreement in the news regarding Israel officialy handing security over to the palestinian authority will have an impact.Perhaps the damage has already been done.

  • Ibrahamav

    Israel didn't leave gaza in order to reduce violence. It appears that the particular arab islamic mindset of the terrorists running that area don't consider that a reason to calm down.Israel left to consolidate forces to better protect the citizens living in Judea and Samaria.When the security barrier is complete, they can dismantle the check points and declare the next arab state.

  • neoleftychick

    Actually, the really sad fact is that it is the Palestinians who have no legal right to be squatting on the West Bank. All the laws favour Israel. Until these people are able to face up to the fact that it is their own "family" -Egypt, Jordan, and Syria that has put them in this mess, life and their future future will remain bleak for them.Also, I must insist that grown adults cease and desist with Edward Said. Are you people serious? I can't believe that you would accept the hopelessly ignorant and serial liar Edward Said as an authority on these matters!It really saddens me that so many people, particularly western middle-class university types who treat "Orientalism" as though it were unassailable holy scripture, the second law of thermodynamics or DNA code!Said was a crank and an intellectual crook. True historians see him for what he was: a lying opportunistic whinger who simply could not admit that the Arab muslim world started to die in the 15th century, and that they haven't had the balls to admit ever since.Enough already! What is wrong with these people? If it's not the Mongols, the Turks, the Persians, it's the British, the French, the Americans and "the Jews.Time for them to grow up, shut up, and stop boring the shit out of the rest of us.