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.

For all of us

Every now and then, Australia’s racist underbelly appears in full public view:

“New South Wales Police say several people of Middle Eastern appearance have been attacked by a mob at Sydney’s Cronulla Beach.

“Thousands of people have gathered at the beach in response to calls to retaliate for the bashing of two lifeguards a week ago.

“Assistant Commissioner Mark Goodwin says several people have been the victims of racial attacks.

“‘In terms of crowd swells against some people of Arabic extraction…some of those people that have been targeted have been Australian-born people that attend this beach in a quiet and relaxing manner,’ he said.”

Demonising an entire ethnic group – people of “Middle Eastern appearance – has no place in a civilised, multicultural democracy.
33 comments ↪
  • orang

    The media, the interviews with police and locals on the trouble makers (those who purportedly punched up a life saver, talked rough, harassed the "locals"..)set up this event. I predicted the outcome as if it was written in a script. The way this was handled from the beginning was to create racial tensions where this should not have existed. Whoever they were – they are a bunch of trouble making young over testosteroned hoods looking for cheap thrills. The media turned it into a race issue. So the Aussie battlers had to turn up en masse to defend their honour. The result? Some poor Greek or Italian bystander got their arse kicked for looking wog or Lebbo like. Absolutely disgusting.

  • J F

    What about the "root causes"?

  • orang

    The root causes are that the country is full of racist fucks-but that's just my opinion.

  • Comical_Ali

    No doubt if Jews were involved in the bashing of life guards or even gang rapes targetting "young Aussie sluts" for that matter – synangogues would be up in flames all around the country. And you all would be sitting here, talking about the "root cause" of it all. That is how dem Joos brought it all upon themselves. Condell would even be kind enough to give everyone a historical "Jesus angle" on the events and enlighten us with 9/11 conspiracy theories and other accounts of historical Shylock treachery. Adammo would even make another snide remark about "G-d's chosen people having never to say they are sorry" and "how they had it coming as a result."Much like Jihadist apologists justified attacks on Jews, Jewish day schools and synangogues in France and the rest of Europe – saying that they brought it upon themselves as result of Ariel Sharon and his policies.

  • Armagnac Esq.

    Just don't call it racism, whatever you do. That's just politically correct censorship.It was just a bunch of good time aussie larrikins, having a bit of sport and sharing the old egalitarian spirit we're so fond of.Now 'scuse me while I go frottage a flagpole somewhere…

  • Comical_Ali

    and the bashing of two life guards , the recent stabbing of a man (who was with three girls who were threatened with rape), not to meniton the specific targetting of Australian girls for gang rape three years ago is all a "cultural misunderstanding." There is no root cause, no two sides to every story – just a bunch of racist redneck yobs who go around causing trouble.

  • anthony

    Exactly right, Ali. It’s a pity wankers around here have such obvious double standards. Why is it, that North African and Arab immigrants can burn and loot France, and it’s suddenly because of poverty, but after years of much-reported rapes, assaults, and more general gang activities committed by Middle Eastern men against Anglo-Saxon/Celtic Australians, with the latest being the attacks on volunteer life guards, this is simply ‘Australia’s racist underbelly’?I agree it’s unacceptable, it’s disgusting, for these vigilantly groups to wave an Australian flag and attack anyone who is not white. It’s a disgrace to this country and I am ashamed. What is equally sickening is that it would have ‘root causes’ if it came from non-white, non-Christian (or non-Jewish), Australians.

  • Ibrahamav

    After being lectured on our responsibilities by Kipling, we expect better behavoir from those with the benefits of a liberal education.We do not expect the same standards that we set for illiterate, backwards, xenophobic, hate-mongering, Islamic people from the war engulfed SE Asia and Middle East.Because of our vastly superior educational opportunities coupled with of western morality, we excuse in others that we do not excuse in ourselves.

  • Shabadoo

    I love it — can't say anything about the behaviour of Muslims, but all Aussies are just a bunch of redneck bogan racists, right?Leftist hypocrisy in action.

  • Wombat

    So you endorse this behaviour Shab?

  • Shabadoo

    Absolutely not. It's disgraceful. But Anty's clearly trying to tar all of Anglo-Saxon Australia with the racist brush.

  • David Tan

    Scratch an anti-racist and underneath you will find a racist.

  • Wombat

    Gee David, by that genius logic, you are arguing that there is no such thing as racism.

  • Wombat

    Shab,Anglo-Saxon Australia is pretty much an anachromism. The chant about who was or wasn; boirnin Australia does not indicate Anglos exlcusively. I'm sure there were plenty of southern Europeans involved also, who a few generations ago were the subject of similar taunts.

  • Stev

    Shab said:Anty's clearly trying to tar all of Anglo-Saxon Australia with the racist brush.Clearly? Which post were you reading? By acknowledging that Australia has a racist underbelly – which it clearly does – Ant's allegedly extending this racism to all of Anglo-Saxon Australia? That's a bit of an extreme reading don't you think?

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Racism exists in most ethnic groups, Anglos, Muslims, etc, but the idea of targeting a particular group – in this case, people of "Middle Eastern appearance" – proves that Australia is, in fact, still very far from reaching maturity.

  • Pete's Blog

    The influence of the media in rabble rousing the rioters will make for an interesting series of stories in the next coupla days.I expect the NSW Government will attempt to hose down the issue by convening a SLOW committee of inquiry. Thugs from all sides should attend. "More police on the beat required" will be the main recommendation (early next year).So sayeth me soothsayer.

  • boredinHK

    It probably didn't help that the gang targeted an icon of australian identity – young , easily identified volunteers who help people of any ethnic group if they are in trouble.AL , the initial bashing also shows Australia is far from maturity ,not only the reaction to it?

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Bored,Yes, fair point. I'm not forgettin the initial bashings, completely unacceptable and motivated by, well, who knows, but it's not OK.

  • Savvas Tzionis

    Why are 'aussies' not referred to as "of British appearance"?

  • Ian Westmore

    Shabadoo said… I love it — can't say anything about the behaviour of Muslims, but all Aussies are just a bunch of redneck bogan racists, right?Leftist hypocrisy in action.Yeah, until the "bunch of redneck bogan racists" target Jews of Mid East appearance, as may happen if this isn't stomped on…. hard. Then we'll all become Ango-Saxon redneck bogan racist anti semites, right? The medias role in this seems to provide a perfect opportunity to test the upgraded sedition laws. But don't go holding your breaths!

  • Comical_Ali

    in response to "Jews of mid eastern appearance" bashing life guards, gang raping "aussie" girils and harrasing + intimidating the local population with general gang voilence.

  • boredinHK

    I could be accused of generalising but many comments on this topic miss one important ingredient- the reaction is a mass response from the working classes. Sure the people involved may think they are middle class now but as a working class/lower middle class person myself I have seen this thinking and manner of behaviour for my entire life (nearly 50 years ). The response is violent , is proudly ignorant and places great value on describing itself as an authentic expression of the people.The justifications being bandied about could just as credibly be used to attack any group perceived as different . There are plenty of abusive and derogatory comments from white males to white females for example.The mystery to me is how this same group, essentially workers , have seen John Howard as the best bet to protect their interests. The ALP appears very alien to these people and their concerns.

  • neoleftychick

    antonyYou REALLY need to send me the drafts for your book quickly, coz, hun, you simply do not get it.The Cronulla drama was nothing more than a "fart in the bath." A few arrests, a couple of cuts and bruises and about 4 people receiving medical treatment.I have thought long and hard about this and personally I am right behind the Cronulla people. Why should they put up with the abomination of women dressed in all that offensive Islamic bullshit in AUSTRALIA!I was quite heartened by this display of good old-fashioned Aussie pluck and disdain for political correctness and the primitive garbage of the Islamic middle east!

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Perhaps you'd like to hang the Arabs yourself? After all, "Aussie pluck" resulted in bashings and violence, condemned by all. Except bigots and neo-Nazis, of course.

  • Wombat

    Lefty, I worry about you hum. "Why should they put up with the abomination of women dressed in all that offensive Islamic bullshit in AUSTRALIA!" It's very easy to answer that. It's called choice.Freedom is a dual edged swrod, it means allowing people to live their lives in a way you may not always agree with, so long as they do not harm you or those around them.That wasn't a display of good old-fashioned Aussie pluck and disdain for political correctness, it was typical mob mentality amd dutch courage fuelled by drink. It's as primitive gas it gets.

  • jonny

    The Bra Boys Vs. the Lebs.Interestingly enough, a friend of mine described the bra boys (before any of this happened) as "lebs on steroids". And Lowenstein, if you want Aussies to "mature" why don't you stop with your anti-semitism already.

  • Wombat

    You might try to look up words you don't understand before using them in a sentence.

  • Comical_Ali

    addamo, if you want to do a lecture on 'choice' why not 'chose' the right audience? The mucho, chauvinistic, and very racist Lebanese muslim youth – who go around the beach calling any female who choses to wear a bikini a "slut" or better still "Aussie slut/whore/pig" – would be a start.You say: "Freedom is a dual edged swrod, it means allowing people to live their lives in a way you may not always agree with, so long as they do not harm you or those around them."Thats exactly why Australians should not be murdered, bashed, raped or intimidated for being Australian (in Australia!) or subscribing to the wrong religion. They should be allowed to live their lives, in freedom and in their own country. I'm from a family of refugees myself and consider myself a proud Aussie. I denounce the voilent bogan surfer riots, but sympathise with the "root cause". It was an unfortunate reaction to a situation which has been brewing for many years, where Australians have been murdered, bashed, raped or harrassed by gangs of Lebanese youth.As a migrant, I dont hold my culture and religion to be superior in any way – especially to that of my host country. In dont try to impose my culture and my religion on the rest of Australia. I respect other people's beliefs and religions – for as long as they dont impose their beliefs (therefore hindering my right to chose) or hatred on me. Many other migrants have managed to do exactly the same thing (whilst holding on to their own cultures) – Greeks, Italians, Chinese etc. Quite clearly there happens to be a major problem with one community – a community which has been a hot bed for racial and religious intolerance. racism, intolerance and even anti-Semitism – all largely ignored by the elites.

  • Comical_Ali

    "Every now and then, Australia's racist underbelly appears in full public view:"Or is it the racist underbelly of Australia's muslim community? you know where the Mufti of Australia, once called Jews "the enemies ofhumanity and the cause of all wars"? Where anti-Semitic and racist literature is sold and distributed in Islamic book shops and Islamic youth camps. Where people are targetted for murder, rape and intimidation for being Australian or a non muslim kuffar.And so the list goes on.

  • Stev

    How's this for a different spin from the Australian media!Australian Intifada?

  • neoleftychick

    The racist Muslims are gearing up for their 1st Australian intifada. Did you see those guys on the 7.30 Report?The Lebanese have stockpiles of weapons galore. It's going to get ugly. Very ugly.It is a pity that some Muslim women do not enter the debate. But of course if they did, there would be an "honour" killing.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    neoleftychick said… "The racist Muslims are gearing up for their 1st Australian intifada."Liar."It is a pity that some Muslim women do not enter the debate." Ignoramus. Go and check out the Muslim discussion boards – see the women who are contributing to discussion of what should be done and organising responses. (While you're at it, why don't you ask them whether they are 'oppressed' as they are in your Islamophobic fantasies? Where have you been hiding? In a cave with Usama?) "But of course if they did, there would be an "honour" killing."Racist.