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.

One man’s terrorist

ABC World Today, March 6:

ELEANOR HALL: And yet you’re in no doubt that Hamas, or certain members of Hamas, are terrorists?

ROBERT FISK: Look, I don’t use the word terrorist about anybody. This has become a semantically meaningless word. Look, there are people in the Hamas movement who support the murder of innocent people, yes, of course.

There are… I’m not trying to make equivalences here, but when you have an Israeli air force officer, as we did at one occasion in Gaza, who bombs a block of apartments, knowing that he will kill innocent children, as well as a man who is believed to be behind suicide bombings, what is that man? What goes on in his brain too?

Meanwhile, the Washington Post’s Charles Krauthammer damns the George Clooney film, “Syriana.” His typically hysterical article – and he wonders why a sea of anti-Americanism is washing across the world? – argues that any work of art that dares to question US policies in the Middle East is a gift to Osama:

Most liberalism is angst- and guilt-ridden, seeing moral equivalence everywhere. “Syriana” is of a different species entirely — a pathological variety that burns with the certainty of its malign anti-Americanism. Osama bin Laden could not have scripted this film with more conviction.

The film is great, by the way. Challenging, witty, moving and complex. Just the kind of film Krauthammer would rather not be made. In its place, films celebrating patriotic fervour and liberations across the world are far more his style. In fact, perhaps he should move to North Korea; he’d fit right in.

17 comments ↪
  • Addamo

    Krauthammer and Horowitz are like 2 peas n a pod. Anyone who challenges their reality is part of Bin Lande's or Zarqwi's cheers squad.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Reading their work is hilarious. I actually enjoy it. It's so ridiculous that in a few year's time, people will ignore them more than they do now.

  • Addamo

    Very true.

  • JohD

    I think a clear pattern is emerging here that events are not as they seem in Iraq and elsewhere. We are being indoctrinated with the image of a the Islamic Terrorist that is divorced from historical reality. One only has to enquire as to the incidence of begeadings in Iraq prior to the 2003 invasion to realize that it was unknown, and no record exists of it occuring prior in modern history. Apart from a fictionalized account at Karbala, 1,400 years ago, there has never been a Sunni/Shi'ite war.

    Arab people are familiar with their history and realize that an attempt is being made to manipulate a preposterous scenario, based on a flawed and perverted understanding of Arab & Muslim history. It is pretty much common knowledge in the Middle East that these events are perculiar and suspicion is being directed towards MOSSAD involvement in the many of the atrocities in Iraq, and in particular the bombing of the Al-Askari Shrine. The hysterical and alarmist reporting in the aftermath of the bombing that appeared in the western media in the aftermath betrayed a concerted desire to see the predictions fulfilled.

    But Iraqis know, even if we in the West are wilfully mislead about these things, that Saddam did not run a Sunni regime, but a despotic one that saw many Shi'ites, Christians and Kurds benefit from their involvement, with many reaching the highest echelons of the Baathist regime. There is very little chance of a Sunni/Shi'te civil war in Iraq, although there is an obvious risk of a clash between two or more of the political factions vying for power and influence.

    It is to this end that we find that a proliferation of propaganda outlets, most of them in the English language, that have a quasi Arabic identity, and who seem to be directing their vitriol toward inciting sectarian conflict in Iraq; or least the appearance of one.

    We are being conditioned to expect more "civil War" incidents that can conveniently be attributed to crazy Muslim fundamentalist. But the story is getting rather tatty, and the veil threadbare.

    One Hundred Shi'ites killed in Iraq, including Women and children? Never happened, and is unlikely to happen. Exactly how does one tell if someone is Shia or Sunni. Do you think even Iraqis can tell? I can assure you that they cannot without asking and receiving an honest answer. No more than one can tell a Protestant from a Catholic.

  • Addamo

    I listene to an interview yesterday on http://www.democracynow.org/ done with Faiza Al-Araji, a female Iraqi civil engoneer who fle do Jordan. A very elloquent and intelligent woman. She paints a very different picture of Iraq and rubbishs the idea that Iraq is a swamp of secterain violence. She even takes offense at the questino of whether she is Sunni or Shia.

    As Rober Fisk has stated, sopmeone is trying to push Iraq towards civil war, but it isn't the sectarian fesuds the media are trying to sell us on.

    Fisk also asks a very pertinent quesrtion. If the death squads and militaias are operting out of the Minitry of the Interior, and the ministry of the interior is paid by the colaition, who is to blame for the mayhem they are wreaking?

  • Chris

    It seems that the Iran/Iraq conflict was a Sunni – Shi’ite war.

    It is surprising that the Protestants and the Catholics could tell each other apart in Ireland. I would guess there is a similar method in iraq that escapes johd's profound bigotry.

    Beheadings were unknown in muslim society prior to 2003? Let me end your blissful fantasy life – ignorance is bliss.

    Bet you hated finding that out.

  • orang

    There is no doubt that when the various "sects" are killing each other and we're in the Green zone, or Kurdistan watching and being entertained, there is no way we can leave – we could never forgive ourselves.

  • JohD

    I really believe that Chris should be booted, there is no excuse for this level of Idiocy. It can't be ignorance, the man is not illiterate, so it must be stupidity. I realize that people are reluctant to appear to be censorsing opinion, but really, is it opinion? I fear that Zios are deliberately and systematically dumbing down discussion of the ME to a point where it becomes meaningless nonsense. I have watched numerous discussion fora degenerate into mindless twaddle as a result of the purile comment that passes for so much Zio discourse. We let them get away with it on the misguided belief that we, at least, are open minded and tolerant of opposing views. But can we so open-minded that our brains fall out?

  • Addamo

    Your "it seems" Chris appear to be contradicted by every non embedded reporter on the ground.

    Sometimes Chris I wonder about you. I get the feeling sometimes that you are simply posting either to be deliberately argumentative (which is fine) or to fill the thread with as many words as possible in the hope of creating noise (ie. diversion).

    You know very well that beheadings, car bombings and sectarian violence in general was alsmost unheard of prior to 2003. So why play dumb and pretend otherwise?

    The Iraq/Iran war was far from being a sectarian war. It was a war over border disputes, at least that's how begun. It would have otherwise been treacherous for Iraq to be attacking the Shia in Iran when Iraq is Shia dominated. Would Saddam really take that risk?

    Try thinking things though once in a while. You might surprise yourself.

  • Chris

    Beheadings were unheard of in the Islamic world before 2003?

    This is a 2001 report from amnesty international:

    "Hundreds of people, among them political prisoners including possible prisoners of conscience, were executed. Hundreds of suspected political opponents, including army officers suspected of planning to overthrow the government, were arrested and their fate and whereabouts remained unknown. Torture and ill-treatment were widespread and new punishments, including beheading and the amputation of the tongue, were reportedly introduced. Non-Arabs, mostly Kurds, continued to be forcibly expelled from their homes in the Kirkuk area to Iraqi Kurdistan."

    Did you see "Including beheadings"? Glad to see that you are disagreeing with Amnesty International. I believe they are often wrong in their conclusions.

  • Chris

    I'm afraid that you have been proven wrong so many times now that it has become systematic. One would think that you are deliberately posting false information. In fact, this could probably be proven in a court of law. That was the downfall of Irving. It was proven that he deliberately mistranslated documents and ignored facts so as to colour his historical records.

    Nobody can be that ignorant in this day and age. Johd being the exception that proves the rule.

  • orang

    Chris , you are so …..wonderful.

  • Addamo

    Oh Chris,

    You do get so excited don't you when you think you have succesfully made a point.

    Sectarian violence? Was this sectarian violence? Nope. None of it. Horrible as it was, people were killed for alledgedly trying to overthrow the government. Karimov boils poepl alive and he's considered a partner in the war on terror.

    No one can change the subjetc quite liek you Chris

    Speaking of Amnesty, perhaps we should consider the reportas they have compiled about israeli agrerssion. After all, they are never wrong right?

    Seeing as we are going OT, how about a few UN reports intot the mix?

    U.N. Report: Jews are Terrorists, Not Palestinians
    http://www.newsmax.com/archives/ic/2006/3/8/91958

    See how stupid and chicdish you are Chris. See how easuy it is to bitch slap your holow headed reasoning?

  • Addamo

    if indeed it is true that Irving deliberately mistranslated documents and ignored facts so as to colour his historical records, then he deserves everything he gets.

  • Addamo

    and as far as human rights groups are concerned, Israel doesn;t even respct it;s own:

    Israeli Gov Says Rights Groups “Undermine the Existence” of the State

    Meanwhile, the Israeli government has accused two prominent human rights groups of undermining the state. In a submission to a Jerusalem court, a state prosecutor said the groups HaMoked and B'Tselem “undermine the existence" of the State of Israel and "cause it damage in the world." The statement came in a lawsuit brought by a Palestinian resident of East Jerusalem against the Israeli government for alleged harassment and abuse. The man’s lawsuit included a statement from a representative of the group Hamoked, which, along with B’Tselem, documents human rights abuses in the Occupied Territories. In response to the prosecutor’s comments, HaMoked director Dalia Kerstein wrote: "The prosecution document contains unbridled attacks on our organization, on B'Tselem and on the very notion of defending the human rights of Palestinians. Attacks by the state on human rights organizations active in it and on the sheer legitimacy of their existence pose a serious threat to democratic rule."

    Interesting that rather than accpet balme for it's actions, israel blames HaMoked and B'Tselem for reporting them. Just liek Washington does when pictures of Guantanamo come out.

    Who are the extremists here?

  • Chris

    Addamo

    Mar 9th, 2006 at 6:51 am

    if indeed it is true that Irving deliberately mistranslated documents and ignored facts so as to colour his historical records

    ******************************************

    It is now a matter of historical record. It was proven, in court, that Irving deliberately mistranslated documents and ignored facts so as to colour his historical records.

    But that doesn't mean he deserved to go to jail. What is so wrong with you that you can think such a thing?

  • Addamo

    He dug his own grave. He entered Austria knwoing that he would likely be arrested.

    There are plenty of laws that are unjust. Break them and you usually pay for it. That's reality.