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.

Buckle up

The Washington Post reports on the latest pronouncement from Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld:

“The United States is engaged in what could be a generational conflict akin to the Cold War, the kind of struggle that might last decades as allies work to root out terrorists across the globe and battle extremists who want to rule the world, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said yesterday.

“Rumsfeld, who laid out broad strategies for what the military and the Bush administration are now calling the ‘long war,’ likened al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden to Adolf Hitler and Vladimir Lenin while urging Americans not to give in on the battle of wills that could stretch for years. He said there is a tendency to underestimate the threats that terrorists pose to global security, and said liberty is at stake.

“‘Compelled by a militant ideology that celebrates murder and suicide with no territory to defend, with little to lose, they will either succeed in changing our way of life, or we will succeed in changing theirs,’ Rumsfeld said in a speech at the National Press Club.”

I wonder how long this “long war” may continue. I’m still young, but would like to retire before the end. After all, with so many “evil-doers” and “terrorists” to eliminate, I suspect I may be on my third pair of dentures before victory is declared.

16 comments ↪
  • boredinHK

    A long piece but shows the effort being made to try and address the issues.http://www.policyreview.org/000/corn.htmlMy guess – shorter than the cold war – maybe about the same as the war in south east asia, so 30 years ?

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    "likened al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden to Adolf Hitler and Vladimir Lenin"Oh Jeez. You'd think they could get a little bit more creative than THIS. Bloody hopeless. Whose writing these screenplays? The writers of the latest Chuck Norris movie?"the battle of wills that could stretch for years"Bloody hell. It's boring enough NOW. Nothing ever happens. It's all recycled headlines – "Terror suspect caught", "Terror suspect released – insufficient evidence", "Govt passes new 'insufficient evidence' law", "Usama releases new tape – reviews Finkelstein's latest", "Zawahari still on the run", "Zawahari still, still on the run", "Bomb threat neutralised – car alarm switched off", etc., etc.And then there are the years of insufferable, racist rants from Akerman and Bolt, and Henderson recycling the same circa 1976 article urging us to never forget the Reds Under the Bed. Please, no, noooooooo.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    From Bolt's website:"the Herald Sun paid several thousands of dollars for my trip, and the extra expense to taxpayers amounted to – I'd guess – to somewhere between $40 – $150.Why did it cost the tax-payers anything? The variation from the estimated minimum ($40) is up to 275% ($150). Why couldn't it be more than that? Surely there are public records kept on this sort of thing in order to prevent rorting of the public purse.

  • Wombat

    And then today, Rumsfled what reciting that pathertic ad hominem about Chavez being democraticalyl elected just like Hitler was.So when it'e the Middle East in quesrion, democracy is the fruit fo the vine that must be shared. When democracy get;s in the way, it's the poison that gave rise to Hitler. What moonbat logic.It's no surprise hearing Rummy;s ratings. He, like Cheney and co are Cold War veteran chickenhawks, linging for the return of the good old days.

  • Edward Mariyani-Squi

    Addamo_01 said… "And then today, Rumsfled what reciting that pathertic ad hominem about Chavez being democraticalyl elected just like Hitler was."Well, when the Big Book of American History is written, at least no-one will be accusing George W. of being democratically elected like Hitler was.

  • orang

    All these people,Rumsfeld Chenney, Bush, Rice have lost their credibility entirely. Whatever they say is not taken seriously by anyone other than the hard core, whether Republican, RWDB ..When I hear Rumsfeld say something like this, the immediate response is to shout at the TV, "Blow it out yo' arse you stupid c*nt! What f&kin war on terror – where is it? What is it?" And then my wife screams, "Are you crazy??? Shouting at the TeeVee???"The concept of a war is needed so that we all agree the US and the free world are in danger from the evil doers. Once that is firmly imbedded in our genes, then no issues with spending zillions on the military toys, and billy bob heroically getting his head blowed off in the defence of his country while serving on one of the twelve aircraft carrier fleets which is gunboat diplomacying it's way around the world.So to use boredinhk sentence,"My guess – shorter than the cold war – maybe about the same as the war in south east asia, so 30 years ?" ..After that some Marketing guru consultant for Washington will call it something else, Lukewarm War, or Crusade for Peace(better not), Return of the Jedi..Someone will think of something, because you know there will always be a "war". There has to be.

  • Wombat

    Another very entertaining post Orang.Ironically, the Bushevicks have actually become a very useful source of informartion. I you want to knwo what is really happening, just listen to what Cheney, Rummy, Condi and Dubya have to say, then reverse it 180 degrees.Like Edward said earliers, cold war warriers are now dusting off their old screeds and doing mass word replace macros on Communism with Islamofascism. and Communist threat with terrorism.

  • Clumsy Birds

    Whose writing these screenplays? The writers of the latest Chuck Norris movie?Edward, no doubt we differ greatly on the political spectrum- but please, leave Chuck Norris out of your posts in the future. He's a good man, a good actor, and he'll spin kick you twice before you can say 'ouch- its Chuck Norris'.As for your comments on Bolt, he's not a racist. Prove me wrong.I do agree, however, that tax-payers shouldn't put any funds into Bolt's trip, and if he requires ADF security- he should pay for it.Likewise, if other journo's such as Fisk rely on the US army for security while in Iraq, they too should pay their way.

  • Wombat

    The thing is Clumsy, the Fisk rarely relies on such protections. He has strong connectino in the region as he is based in Lebanon anyway.

  • James Waterton

    Hitler wasn't democratically elected, incidentally.

  • James Waterton

    Oh, and Bush was. Interesting inverse take on history you have there, Edward…

  • Clumsy Birds

    Fisk rarely relies on such protections.Are you implying that Bolt relies on the ADF all the time or something?I'm honestly not sure what you're getting at. Are you saying because Fisk 'rarely relies on such protections', he should get it for free or something?If you were making a point addamo, you'll have to explain it to me a bit better, sorry.

  • Clumsy Birds

    Addamo, if you're still reading this. What do you think of this?I think it puts a questionable light on Fisk's reporting, myself. And his decision that Jesus was born in Jerusalem instead of Bethlehem just makes him look like an idiot.

  • Progressive Atheist

    Jesus, if he existed at all, was not born in Bethlehem, as that town did not exist at the time he was supposedly born. Neither did Nazareth.

  • James Waterton

    Who told you that rubbish, Progressive Atheist? Bethlehem featured rather extensively in the Old Testament – which considerably predates the birth of Jesus (who undoubtably did exist). Nazareth's existence is slightly more questionable – although it's far from conclusive fact that Nazareth did not exist during Jesus's lifetime.Going by your username, it's not surprising your facts aren't completely straight about these sorts of things. Still, one wonders why you're so bold to discuss issues you don't seem to have a particularly firm grasp on.

  • Progressive Atheist

    You are quite right, James. Bethlehem did exist, though Nazareth definitely did not.Going by your username, it's not surprising your facts aren't completely straight about these sorts of things. Still, one wonders why you're so bold to discuss issues you don't seem to have a particularly firm grasp on.Help me, James. What can I do to be saved?