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.

Increasing the pressure

Palestine Solidarity Campaign (UK) is encouraging a consumer boycott of Israeli goods:

“Focusing on oranges, dates and avocados, the central aim of the campaign is to build the boycott of Israeli goods and encourage shoppers to let supermarkets know they will do this.

“Consumers in at least 15 cities across the UK will be highlighting their boycott of Israeli goods, and persuading others to do the same, to create solidarity with the Palestinian people. Activists in city centres including London, Brighton, Bristol, Bucks/Berks, Camden, Durham, E.London, Exeter, Hackney, Oxford, Stevenage, W. Kent, W London, W Midlands, and York, will be visiting supermarkets to hand out leaflets. Campaigners in Hackney will take to the streets in a mini-bus, dressed as fruit, to bring their anti-apartheid message to the public in front of supermarkets in the area.

“They cite the words of Nelson Mandela who visited Occupied Palestine and declared that Israel’s occupation with its Wall, hundreds of checkpoints and rampant discrimination against Palestinians was worse than the Apartheid experienced in South Africa. A widespread, international consumer boycott, sanctions and divestment can do what governments refuse to do, end Israel’s impunity.”

Israel’s brutality will only end through economic pressure. In time, I believe this will have an effect, like in apartheid South Africa, and the campaign therefore deserves our support.

18 comments ↪
  • Pete's Blog

    Oh ALI see a couple of drawbacks.Such a campaign may play into the hands extreme right groups in Britain who'd love to aid a boycott of goods of the only Jewish country around. Israeli ag products can be hidden and mixed into the "sourced from other counties" label. Australia received dates from Iraq under the "other counties" label during the latter part of Saddam's time.Shortfalls in UK sales might be compensated by increased US sales thus reinforcing US-Israel's unholy alliance.

  • Shabadoo

    What about life-saving medical diagnostic technology invented in Israel? Or treatments developed by Israeli companies? Or other high-tech innovations…I remember someone posting a long list here once, and to really boycott, you'd have to go far beyond just oranges and dates.

  • Ibrahamav

    Nelson Mandela proves he either has a grudge or he is losing his mind. I thought the truth was important to him, not the admiration of antisemitic left wingers.

  • Wombat

    Mansdela would be a farily good judge as to how the consitions in the occupied terrotories cpompared to Soweto type encalves.And similarly, the international boycot of South Africa did create enormous political momentum.Speaking his mind does mean he is losing it. That what he has to say is not music to your ears does not make him a supporter of anti-semites.

  • Ibrahamav

    Mandela is not speaking his true opinion. He is either still pissed off that Israel was lightly allied with Sa, or he is suffering dementia. Or he's a flipping antisemite. There is no other explanation for his 'stated' opinion.And as he was in jail for the vast majority of the time involved, he is least able to compare from personal experience. But his hatred of Israel has nothing to do with any deepset antisemitism.

  • psydoc

    Antony, it is curious that you would advance a boycott of Israel when you have not done so on numerous countries with obviously worse human rights records. Can you please explain the reason for this? Do Jews require special hatred?

  • neoleftychick

    antonyI am enjoying your unbelievably medieval misogny. Boycott Israel to save cultures that encourage "homour" killings?You should be ashamed of yourself.

  • Wombat

    You are a ted miopic Lefty.Are you suggesting that the culture in question should be erradicated to prevent the likelyhood of "homour" killings?it makes as much sense as the Vietnam era rational of destroying a village in order to save it. Marvelous logic. You are doign the right wing proud.

  • Ibrahamav

    I don't think there is any chance in saving it. But AL's myopic choice of boycott appears to be suspicious. Why is AL not boycotting China over Tibet?

  • Wombat

    Good question. So why is the US not attacking Saudi Arabia over human rights abuses, every time they single out Cuba?Why was the US holding up Egypt as a model of democractic reform while beating up on Russia?Why is the US picking on Syria, while also sending people there to be tortured on America's behalf?

  • Ibrahamav

    I also wonder why the US is not attacking Saudi Arabia, but i am not privy to discissions that far up the COC. But AL has no COC, just hypocricy.Egypt is advancing and Russia is back-sliding.

  • Wombat

    Egypt advancing in what way? They're stuck with a president for life. At least Russia has fixed terms for presindent.

  • Ibrahamav

    Sorry you missed all the comotion in Egypt. Was your head someplace dark? Or is it that if the advance isn't quite in the direction you want it to be, it isn't an advance?Progress is only notable if you approve?

  • Wombat

    I saw a lot of images of polic wielding riot gear.It was bizarre hearing Egypt's ruling party state that the country is "living in a state of marvelous awakening" after it won nearly three-quarters of seats.Awakening? From what?PS. I have no opinion on which direction Egypt should go so long as it is in accordance with the will of Egyptians.

  • Mannie

    Nelson Mandela was in prison from 1962 to 1980, mostly on Robben Island. During that period, and with the very restricted numbers of visitors allowed to go to the island, one of the very few who managed to get there was the then only woman member of the white apartheid South African Parliament, Helen Suzman of the Progressive Party. She was for a very long time the only Prog. member of parliament. Because of her continuing demands, and because the government was already a pariah around the world – Israel being one of the exceptions – always remember the nuclear device exploded in the South Atlantic as a joint effort of the two governments – Suzman was able to see and talk to Mandela, who was not allowed to be quoted in the South African media – he was after all a banned person.So a bond of friendship developed between Mandela and Suzman which continued past their parliamentary days.Suzman is Jewish and Mandela is not an anti-semite, and their views on Israel differ.Mandela is a politican and has made mistakes – one of his worst ones was not speaking out about modern South Africa's biggest crisis – HIV/AIDS while he was president. But Mandela has now put this right by speaking out and criticising his successor Thabo Mbeki over his mishandling – denial – as in Holocaust denial – of the way to deal with the situation where 20% to 25% of the South African population is HIV positive.Mandela has also visited Palestine in recent times and has therefore had a first-hand view of the situation on the ground.Mandela is not to be dismissed as having lost it on the grounds of old age – on the contrary, often wisdom comes with life's experiences which is no doubt what many of the writers to this site will discover as they age – more gracefully and less abusively, one hopes!

  • Ibrahamav

    Mandela is to be dismissed as an aging politician wishing to bask in the spotlight by bashing israel, as so many of his islamofascist friends do, or he's senile, or he is taking revenge, or he's an antisemite who knows a enough 'good' jews as to provide cover.

  • Mannie

    Aging – spelt incorrectly!
    Bashing Israel!
    Islamofascist!
    Senile!
    Anti-semite!
    And this is informed comment from some juvenile delinquent who is still wet behind the ears!

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Ibrahamav said… Mandela is…an aging politician…bashing israel… senile…taking revenge…an antisemite. You forgot to add: international statesman, destroyer of apartheid, and life-long opponent of racism.And I still don't get why you keep referring to him "taking revenge". On whom? And why? (I asked this before but you refused to answer. I really would like to know. Seriously.)