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.

The brewing storm

David Hirst (Guardian Middle East correspondent 1963-2001), The Guardian, January 13:

“A general US retreat from the region, with troop withdrawal at its core, is no doubt a prerequisite for, and yardstick of, the emergence of a healthy, self-reliant new Middle Eastern order. But, with the kind of ignominious scuttle from Iraq that failure would presumably entail, the region won’t just revert to the status quo ante. Instead of Iraq becoming a beacon of all good things it will become the single most noxious wellspring of all the bad ones the invasion was supposed to extinguish – and new ones to boot.

“If the Middle East was a jungle before, it will be a wilder one afterwards, with most elements of the decadent existing order, in their increased insecurity, driven to even cruder methods – increased internal repression or external adventurism – to preserve themselves. And it will become even more anti-American. For while a ‘good’ retreat would decrease such sentiments, a ‘bad’ Iraqi one will only spur and spread the active, often violent expression of them. That is because, for the Arabs, Iraq was only the latest drastic episode in a long history of western interference in their affairs. Until the wider, pre-Iraqi consequences of that interference are remedied, the example of successful anti-American resistance in Iraq will only encourage it elsewhere, especially in Palestine.

“If all this portends an unfathomable mess, one thing at least is already clear: Iran will be the main beneficiary of US failure and the long-overdue accession of the Shia majority, its coreligionists, to political ascendancy in Iraq. The increase in regional clout it derives from this will be used at America’s expense. The mullahs have long been readying themselves for a great reckoning. With their new president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, readiness seems to be mutating into active desire. He and those around him believe that only the US stands in the way of Iranian regional dominance and that the US, seen as defeated in Iraq, is now a ‘sunset power’.

“On the other hand, no one invested greater expectations in the Iraqi adventure than Israel. US success, it thought, would transform its strategic position. But with US failure, Israel will grow more repressive against the Palestinians, and more ready for military action against Iran. Should the US itself deal with Iran in the same violent and partisan fashion as it did Iraq, the adverse consequences of that new adventure will outstrip those of the earlier one. For there is no reason to doubt that Iran’s response, from both itself and its strengthened Shia and Islamist allies in the region, will be the devastating one it constantly promises.”

3 comments ↪
  • Wilbourne

    Well then, let us pray for a free and democratic Iraq for all it's people. Surely no-one could be so vile as to hope Iraq breaks out into civil war and massive carnage just to spite the USA. Or could they?

  • Wombat

    No but as some would say, it's the reality and we need to deal witn it.It stil amazes me how the pro war groups continue to argu that war critics want Iraq to fail. It completel'y elludes then that oppositino to the war stems from a concern for the Iraqi people as opposed to ani-Americanism.No doubt it's the ony way pro war groups can establish some moral legitimacy.

  • leftvegdrunk

    addamo, haven't you realised that warning that something may happen is the same thing as wishing for it to happen..?Another example of what Brent Howard calls the "crude slander of the left". Don't warn against a course of action because of its possible negative outcomes or else you'll be painted as an architect of those outcomes. Flawless logic, and usually backed by vitriolic howls. Oh, and accusations that you are full of hate.