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.

Jump first, ask questions later

At the end of last year, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez was accused of making anti-Semitic comments. The usual suspects immediately claimed that the man was a menace. The truth, however, may be a little different. US Jewish newspaper, The Forward, reports:

“The Venezuelan Jewish community leadership and several major American Jewish groups are accusing the Simon Wiesenthal Center of rushing to judgment by charging Venezuela’s leftist president, Hugo Chavez, with making anti-Semitic remarks.

“Officials of the leading organization of Venezuelan Jewry were preparing a letter this week to the centre, complaining that it had misinterpreted Chavez’s words and had failed to consult with them before attacking the Venezuelan president.

“‘You have interfered in the political status, in the security, and in the well-being of our community. You have acted on your own, without consulting us, on issues that you don’t know or understand,’ states a draft of the letter obtained by the Forward. Copies of the letter are also to be sent to the heads of the World Jewish Congress and the American Jewish Committee, among other Jewish groups.

“‘We believe the president was not talking about Jews and that the Jewish world must learn to work together,’ said Fred Pressner, president of the Confederation of Jewish Associations of Venezuela.”

No doubt, US Jews will claim that their Venezuelan brothers and sisters need a few lessons in Zionist baiting.

15 comments ↪
  • Wombat

    Misinterpreted someone's words? Israel? Well I never.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Indeed. It's become pretty comical the ways in which certain people try and smear Chavez…and it's having no bloody effect at all. May they long continue.

  • Comrade JR

    A piece in the gossip section of today's Daily Telegraph gushes about Nicole Kidman awarding a "humanitarian" prize on behalf of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre to Rupert Murdoch for, of all things, support for Israel. I've never known of a humanitarian award that was given based on support for a particular country – I thought it involved actually doing something humanitarian! See the story here: http://www.dailytelegraph.news.com.au/story/0,202

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Thanks for that. There's a small pic in today's SMH.Will try and find out about this later. Murdoch has certainly be a 'good friend' of Israel, if blind support is regarded as a good thing.

  • Wombat

    How bizarre. Didn't Murdoch get himself into tac trouble a while back in Israel?

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Really? Can't recall that. Any info?I'll post about this shortly. Found a GREAT pic from the night.

  • Wombat

    Sorry that was meant to read "tax trouble" in case there was confusion. I remember seeing it on the TV once, with ISraeli officials rading offices owned by Murdoch at the time.I remmber wondering hwo a guy like Murdoch could let that happen. Can't seem to find any links though.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Actually, now I think I remember something about that. But since when were tax problems really an issue for a mogul? Evidence for the prosecution: Kerry Packer.

  • Wombat

    He probably paid his bill in the form of free and unconditional publicity for Israel. Thugs are fond of contra deals.

  • leftvegdrunk

    The campaign against Chavez is pretty typical so far. I wonder when words will be replaced by covert ops. Maybe when the Whitehouse has a moment to think about something besides the Middle East.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Consider it already done. A number of attempted coups against Chavez were supported by the US, but they failed.

  • James Waterton

    Wow. You guys have some really interesting delusions going on. If I was a psychologist I'd find it professionally intriguing.

  • Wombat

    Do tell James. That man we think is Chavez is obviously a dopple ganger right – or was it Harry Belafonte's second cousini?2003 wasn't a failed coup right. Most likely just propaghanda stunt to ensure another election victory I presume?

  • Rich Bowden

    Can't wait for the "CHAVEZ SECRET WMD PROGRAMME DISCOVERED" headline….Might be worth an invasion or two to bring "democracy" to South America?

  • leftvegdrunk

    Which delusions in particular are you referring to, James? Don't be shy.