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.

Justice in the face of injustice

It takes a certain kind of lawyer to be attracted to terror suspects. Sydney attorney Adam Houda is that kind of man.

“I didn’t go looking for this work”, he says. “I don’t choose my clients, but I believe every person is entitled to proper legal defence. It is an honour that people think I could provide that quality defence when the consequences of the cases for them are so enormous.”

Houda provides interesting insights into the ways in which the Howard government and the corporate media constantly shift the goalposts, making fair trials all but impossible.

When such conditions are threatened, our democracy dies a little death.

7 comments ↪
  • Pete's Blog

    I support the anti terror legislation.Still – the arrested "suspects" deserve a fair trial and I agree that the government's hype surrounding the arrests and media campaign over the legislation would make a "fair trial" questionable.Its inspiring that Adam Houda is having some success in such a conservative yet politicized profession. Having more secular (Muslim) leaders like him would be a step forward for Muslims in Australia. I think their community has been held back for too long by a largely religious leadership.PS – shortlived "Spying and Sensuality" has bitten the dust. "Spying Bad Things" now rules. I'm keeping my (many and varied) secrets of charming the ladies to myself.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    I still haven't seen a coherent ARGUMENT made for why the current criminal code is incapable of dealing with a potential terrorist act.Can someone point me in the direction of such an argument (the more 'official' the better)?As for Mr Houda, yes, it's good to see someone willing to put up their hand to defend alleged terrorists, but I suspect if he didn't, someone else would. Lawyers generally don't have a problem defending anyone.As for the comment by Spying Bad Things, "Having more secular (Muslim) leaders like him would be a step forward for Muslims in Australia." As a general rule, I agree, but I don't think we should get TOO starry-eyed about Mr Houda and co. The media spotlight is a seductive siren, and I can't help getting the feeling that we are seeing the embryo of a political career. That said, people like Waleed Aly and Irfan Yusuf do a hell of a lot better than the average media-inflated imam.

  • Shabadoo

    You're awfully quick to target this as an "injustice"…now, say what you will, but the actions of the suspects and their compatriots don't exactly indicate innocence, or a respect for the system. One of these clowns shot at cop outside a mosque; their mates beat up a cameraman.These don't strike me as particularly sympathetic "victims" of the Howard "junta".

  • Wombat

    Then let them be charged for the crimes they commited. no the ones they might make in some Monority Report scenario.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    "but the actions of the suspects and their compatriots don't exactly indicate innocence, or a respect for the system. One of these clowns shot at cop outside a mosque; their mates beat up a cameraman."Let's hope you're not on the jury. Your statements are a perfect example of how the media has contaminated the jury pool.

  • Shabadoo

    Al-Eddy, the media didn't pollute the jury pool – the guys who beat up a cameraman polluted the jury pool. What did they expect? That footage of them punching and throwing chairs in front of cameras from every news organisation in Australia wouldn't make it into the public domain?Please, defend their actions. They were upset? They did it out of a sense of injustice? John Howard made them do it?

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Shabadoo said… "the guys who beat up a cameraman polluted the jury pool."They pollute the jury pool too.