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.

Unite against racism

Following the ongoing racial violence in Sydney, something positive:

Close to one hundred activists, students, ethnic community reps, Union reps and a handful of Shire locals gathered in Sydney’s University of Technology last night to discuss a unified response to the deplorable events at Cronulla last weekend.

The consensus?

The Unite Against Racism Rally

WHEN: Sunday 18th December 2005

TIME: 1pm

WHERE: Town Hall Square, Sydney

Stay tuned for more updates.

47 comments ↪
  • Pete's Blog

    Its fitting that its in Sydney (definitely not Melbourne) but I'm cynical.Bus trips (for Trots) from Melbourne are way too cheap. So I sense "that down with the Howard government" will be shrilled loudly – in order to create some sort of reponsibility for (years of) Lebanese gang violence that started this nightmare.

  • Shabadoo

    Yeah, colour me not-so-impressed. This collection (including unionists???) is pretty much guaranteed to produce a heap of Howard-hating cultural dhimmitude served up in a cloak of motherhood statements about unity.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    You're right Shab, best do nothing, stay home and read blogs. Very productive and useful…

  • Wombat

    Exactly. Why find a solution when this drama provides such meaty grist for the right wingers to prove their point.

  • Shabadoo

    Look, if I thought they were going to demand something useful, like serious police action against *all* concerned, I'd be more supportive…I've just seen this sort of thing before. What do *you* expect to be accomplished?I note that the church in Lakemba has cancelled its carols service. I guess the cops can't be bothered protecting that sort of thing. Score one for the bad guys.

  • Wombat

    The fact that this is a grass roots initiative, as opposed to a Howard type photo op, is a heatlhy sign. If these men profess to do what they do because of wome warped view of their religion, then it is up to their religious leaders to set them straight, and do so in a public forum.Tell me Shab, were you ever a Keating or Hawk hater?

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    I'm just trying to recall the last time the Right had a protest. Oh that's right – they do their protesting at the Prime Minister's home over dinner.

  • Wombat

    Actually, the way the right usually protest is by writing a smaller cheque to the Liberal party than the Labor party.

  • Comical_Ali

    Lowy, perhaps (as a Jew) you contribute to this "Unite against racism rally" by enlightening everybody on your own experiences in fighting racism, bigtory and intolerance – especially in the Ukraine. From that one particular experience , you can suggest that it might be best for Muslims to "avoid announcing their religion", in order to avoid any racial taunts – just like you did. Otherwise "they would be asking for it."In addition, perhaps you can bring along and put on display another caricture depicting little Asian men. Always ideal for an anti-racism conference. And why not bring along your own mate, Glenn Condell – to enligten everyone on how da evil Jooz mocked Jayzus and conspired to bring about 9/11 and other world disasters. Hell you can even treat everyone to pieces of your own writings, ravings and rantings – you know those that were actually published in the Neo-Nazi Adelaide institute.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    I may just take all that advice on board. Who knew I could receive so much from a faceless, and therefore gutless, man?

  • spek

    Hi. Sorry this post isn’t exactly on the topic, but I thought someone might be interested in a series of posts on timblair.net that were sparked by a post I made to the effect that the riots in Cronulla could not be the result of a real threat since there has been no rise in crime in Cronulla. http://timblair.net/ee/index.php/weblog/comments/exactly_wrong/ I'm pretty new to letter writing but it sparked an extremely long series of progressively hysterical responses and even caused someone to cite me as an example of a champagne socialist, which was a small achievement for me – see:“Sicik, Sick, Sick of your Shit” athttp://attentionbrick.blogspot.com/ One of the advantages of blogs compared with talkback radio as used by people like Alan Jones is that it is possible to get an alternate view in and when this happens it becomes clear that the arguments made by these people are not able to be substantiated and then the meaningless nastiness of their standpoint is exposed as it stands without justification, well I think so anyway.

  • Comical_Ali

    take as much on board as possible – just enough without making you sink.

  • leftvegdrunk

    Shab, Comical: please explain to us exactly how you are stating your own opposition to racist violence. (And no, Comical, slandering Loewenstein and making typos doesn't count.) Your response here shows that you are completely igorant of the track record of Fightdemback. I suspect that what really frightens you pair is the word, UNITY.

  • Comical_Ali

    no its more along the lines of sanctimonious HYPOCRISY

  • leftvegdrunk

    I see, Comical. And what is it you are doing about racism in Australia, my typographically-challenged friend?

  • Comical_Ali

    for a start, I dont throw grenades around and then later accuse others of doing the same thing or better still lecture them about the dangers + immorality of throwing such things around.

  • Shabadoo

    The problem is that this won't engage the people who are causing the trouble…you'll get a bunch of Islamic leaders saying they need more money, a bunch of guilty whiteys bleating "sorry we are so mean and make you look at women in bikinis!", and the thugs and crims who should have been smacked down by the cops years ago will be nowhere to be seen – too busy torching churches and spraying gunfire at Christmas celebrations.

  • Wombat

    I woudl imagine that the real thugs and crims will be holidaying at some exotic location away from all this drama, being called sir and sharing dinner tables with our politicians.

  • leftvegdrunk

    Comical, do you ever answer a question directly? Where's your spine?Shab, I think you need to research this a bit more. Bikinis? More money? Is this obtuse, or just sterotyping? (The latter is what this demonstration seeks to oppose. How about you?)

  • Shabadoo

    I'm tipping at least 7 out of the following 10 to occur at this little circle…er, peace rally:1. An apology to the "traditional" owners of this land;2. Fervent blaming of John Howard for "creating a climate" in which it is "OK to hate Arabs";3. Only the barest lip-service paid to the anti-social and criminal behaviour of Lebanese Muslim thugs who have abused the trust of the country that let them in as refugees;4. Demand for more money for "education programs"/community centres/etc for Western SYdney suburbs, to be administered by the likes of shonks such as Keysar Trad; 5. Calls for anti-vilification laws of the sort that have chilled British speech like a bottle of champers at the Melbourne cup and which will make the sedition laws look like the First Amendment;6. 5:1 (at least) ratio of mentioning the "mediterranean"-looking types who got bashed at Cronulla versus all the innocent victims set upon by Lebanese toughs in Maroubra, et al;7. All sorts of strange bedfellows arrangements such as Bra Boys and bikies;8. Fear/distrust/what have you of Arabs on the part of the wider community will only be attributed to JWH, 9/11, and Bali, and no one will have the courage to take a crap in the punchbowl and point out that the gang-rape crisis and politically-correct policing are far more to blame;9. Massive self-congratulations on the part of Darp, who while doing worthy if obscure work in exposing neo-Nazis ignores the much broader hatreds coming from the other side of things;10. Plenty of leftist issue piggybacking (IR reform, VSU, etc), which will be irresistable to the socialists and students who are drawn to this sort of thing like moths to a flame.

  • Pete's Blog

    Just returning to the street violence at hand. I think it all boils down to the police maintaining a stepped up law and order presence in the trouble spots.There must be a perception from Lebanese and their opponents that the police are being evenhanded.All this extra policing costs money – through higher taxes.If the Rally advocates this type of action it will be worthwhile.

  • Shabadoo

    There are PLENTY of other ways we could squeeze policing money out of NSW's coffers without raising already extortionate taxes…

  • smiths

    ant, you have some great links to stories all over the web that can generate really good discussions,and you have some good intelligent regulars who engage with the issues,you also have a set of top notch spoilers who distract nearly every thread into 'anti semite' or 'lefty' slanging matches,please consider my point of view, that it wouldnt be problematic or elitist in anyway to ban them,we all know who they are

  • David Heidelberg

    Shab, I've taken the liberty reproducing the right-wing official contribution to the debate."-"

  • Winston Howard

    Thanks Antony for showing the courage of your convictions. It was a great piece clearly showing that Howard Bush, Rumsfeld and Rice are clearly wrong on Iraq as they are on the Sydney beach.This is clearly a racist attack on the Mid-East community and it becomes another reason why resonable people think this was provoked to incite more hatred.We ought to realize these people don't have to stay here and we could very well lose them if these things don't end.

  • neoleftychick

    Fantastic news today as Lebanese and Islamic women are saying "enough" and are joining with western women planning such events as a "peace train." The Arab mothers are trying to keep their sons in doors by taking their car keys and mobile phones.I am so heartened by this as there is no way that women could excercise this sort of initiative in the Arab world. And sadly, responsible and democratic political mobilisation is anathema to the Arab male mind.Maybe this is a hopeful harbinger that Australia may well be saved the clash of civilizations type heartache that seems to be besetting the majority of the world.But of ourse now with the Muslims ramping up their holocaust denial rubbish perhaps the worst is yet to come.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Comical_Ali said… "for a start, I dont throw grenades around and then later accuse others of doing the same thing or better still lecture them about the dangers + immorality of throwing such things around." dirtbikeoption, Frankly, I'm glad Comical_Ali's only contribution to preventing racism is staying at home and making racist comments here. Imagine the horror of him "helping" by going out into the world! Let's all encourage Comical_Ali to just stay home and continue what he's doing. Harm-minimisation is the name of the game.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Smiths,Re your comment:"please consider my point of view, that it wouldnt be problematic or elitist in anyway to ban them"For many, exposing their inability to argue by using the anti-Semitism and lefty tag simply shows their ignorance.I don't really like the idea of banning anyway. But thanks for the compliment.

  • uphillsprinter

    Neo,Once again you have resorted to your simplistic mantra dressed in so many words: ARAB MAN BAD!So desperateIf you had not noticed, ant's particular post is all for combating racism not, endorsing it.

  • Shabadoo

    So now we've got 4 churches burned and a report that police were told to stay away from a group of Middle-Eastern men who were involved in the rioting… and yet it's still just white racism to blame, right?

  • Shabadoo

    Oh, hey, here's the solution (al-Eddy could probably enlighten us) – convert (or "revert", as they like to say) to Islam!I really hate relaying this story but this is what happened in Auburn about a month ago.A young Indonesian boy walks home from Auburn train station. On the way he gets held up by about ten guys of a particular ethnic appearance… what do they want? what else, his mobile phone. He refuses to give it to them, so they reckon its fun that 10 guys gang up on one guy… very tough indeed.Anyway after putting this poor brother on the ground and taking his wallet and mobile phone half of the pack of wolves run away with it. While the rest stay back to take free kicks on him. The real hurt of this brother was while being kicked "I am Muslim and your Muslim and you do this to me". Suddenly the guys kicking him stop. They say "What you are Muslim, We thought you are Asian". They then shout out to the guys running off with his wallet and phone to come back and they give him the items back. They apologised, but whats that going to achieve the Indonesian brother still has back pains and had bruises for a week.Similar story happened last year when a Turkish boy was mistaken for an Aussie and had his mobile phone stolen and I am sure there are many many more stories…..

  • Wombat

    So Shab,Do you propose the way to fight racism is with more racism?Looking at the posts on the list you sent, the sentiment is that the responsiblity falls on teh shoudlers of the parents of these hoodlums.

  • Shabadoo

    The hoodlums themselves, their parents, and law enforcement/judges to firmly throw the book at them. C'mon, they just put a guy away for 4 months for carrying a TREE BRANCH, fer chrissakes; do you really believe that the cops can't do the same with these Lebanese Muslim thugs?Judging from Tim Priest's piece and the Channel 7 report of the police dispatch where the cops were told NOT to confront these guys, I think we know the answer.Race/religion is an overlay; it's about ENFORCING THE LAW.

  • Wombat

    Yes I agree with you Shab, it is about enforcing the law. You just seem to appear to be darting beween lucid arguments and taking swipes at the supposed muslim mind set.

  • Shabadoo

    But there *is* a Muslim mindset, even if it's more tribal than religious — why are churches being attacked?(And can you imagine the outrage if anyone even looked cross-eyed at the Lakemba Mosque)?

  • Wombat

    I'd be mroe inclined to agree of a Lebanese mindset, than a muslim one. at least in terms fo the violence that's at play.

  • Shabadoo

    Not really — check out Tanveer Ahmed's piece in OnlineOpinion (http://onlineopinion.com.au/view.asp?article=3962) — this is definitely a religious/class thing

  • neoleftychick

    It is quite tragic, but I suppose predictable, that the Usual bandwagon jumpers have now stepped up.YAWN!

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Shabadoo said… "A young Indonesian boy walks home from Auburn train station. On the way he gets held up by about ten guys of a particular ethnic appearance… what do they want? what else, his mobile phone. He refuses to give it to them, so they reckon its fun that 10 guys gang up on one guy… very tough indeed."Yeah – did you see the reactions of the Muslims on the Muslim Village forum to this story? Disgust and dismay. Hmmm – it must have been a really big disappointment to you to see this. (Maybe you failed to mention this because it didn't fit with you Holy Roman Crusade to save us all.*)______________*Note: That's a joke, although I know you can't fathom that. After all, your comprehension skills are officially: Very Low.)

  • neoleftychick

    Of course the really tragic irony about these goons, bums, and no-hopers associated with NUS is that last Sunday's rally in Cronulla was a stand against racism. Why weren't these occidentalist twats down there?Thank god we now have VSU. The bludgers will have to fund their own nonsense.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    NUS…Now there's a twist.Did you see the Intergalactic Federation on Non-aligned Planets there too?*shakes head* Everyone's got an agenda these days.

  • orang

    All this race talk is bullshit. – but good for keeping your eyes glued to the news on telly. It's testosterone mixed with youth and no brains, some kind of tribal bond, add machismo, alcohol and nothing better to do and stir violently. Teddy boys,,,,,Mods & Rockers, West Side fokkin Story fer christs sake. ….was before Labs and Westies.

  • hilda

    Shabadoo said… "A young Indonesian boy walks home from Auburn train station. On the way he gets held up by about ten guys of a particular ethnic appearance… what do they want? what else, his mobile phone. He refuses to give it to them, so they reckon its fun that 10 guys gang up on one guy… very tough indeed."My boyfriend was attacked by three Lebanese youths in a mugging; in the space of two minutes they broke his jaw in three places, it had to be wired shut for six weeks. Every liquid meal was accompanied by a pair of pliers at the table in case he choked and the wires had to be snipped. I didn't sleep properly for months and had nightmares. If the Police had not been near by… well I don’t like to think about it.However NOT ONCE in the recovery of this significant horrible event in our lives did it occur to my partner or myself to think to retaliate by taking a baseball bat to the first Lebanese person we could find or to blame an entire community or indeed race of people for this horrible action. I do however look to the parents of these underage thugs to address why their sons are committing such morally irrepressible crimes and then to the wider community both Lebanese and beyond in supporting rehabilitation of those families and a change in attitudes. This isn’t a calculated approach but my gut response to such events and the same response I felt from word go. It defies logic to suggest recent Cronulla events are justified by previous incidents of violence, even racial violence and disgusts me that someone could take such an approach.

  • Wombat

    Hilda,Thank you for sharing such a painful, but highly informative experience with us. It is clear that you and your brave partner are remarkable people and an example to all society. I doubt that I would be as clear and wise in my thinking if that crime were to be perpetrated on me or someone I loved. Wisdom spoken such as yours is truly unique and refreshing.Peace.

  • orang

    hilda,it's easy for me to say, but seeing and telling the parents is definitely a must. This behaviour is not acceptable to a civil society and I refuse to believe that the parents would not be shamed by this.

  • leftvegdrunk

    I await Shab's response to Hilda's tale.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    dirtbikeoption said… I await Shab's response to Hilda's tale. I would have liked to so neonazichick's response. Pity she got banned.