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.

War criminals should not pass “go”

Tony Blair may believe that “anti-Americanism” is “madness” and the Iraq war is a noble struggle akin to the fight against the Nazis – who writes such hyperbolic and dishonest nonsense? – but the Iraqi people are struggling to cope with “liberation“:

More than 20% of Iraqis live in abject poverty despite the boost in government’s social security program, a report by the Ministry of Planning reveals.

The poverty level is bound to increase due to inefficiencies in the distribution of food rations which are credited for saving the country from starvation.

Facing tough armed resistance and political inaction, the government has proved much less efficient than the former regime which U.S. troops ousted three years ago in handing out food rations.

Iraqi families now get less food than before and certain essential items have gone missing from the food ration card.

Prices of staples like rice, sugar, flour and vegetable ghee are soaring. Iraqis without income find it extremely hard to make ends meet.

The government has expanded its social security program which now covers hundreds of thousands of families.

But welfare benefits are meagre and fall short of meeting basic needs. Under the new social security arrangements a poor family – one without support or income – gets an average of 80,000 dinars.

The sum is much bigger than what civil servants made under former leader Saddam Hussein. But prices have skyrocketed particularly of fuel, rent and other basic needs.

The Australian media has lost all critical faculties during the Blair visit, and their analysis has been typically fawning. It’s worth considering the words of a real journalist, the Guardian’s Richard Norton-Taylor, who recently suggested that the US/UK alliance “has become nothing but one-way traffic”:

A senior British military commander in the invasion of Iraq said the other day that Donald Rumsfeld, the US defence secretary, should be tried for war crimes. He was speaking in private and, I assume, did not mean to be taken literally. But there was no mistaking the anger in his voice.

Is it in Britain’s national interest to be so closely allied to a US that takes Britain for granted, to an administration that sets up Guantanamo Bay – where the treatment of prisoners led a high-court judge to remark that “America’s idea of what is torture is not the same as ours and does not appear to coincide with that of most civilised nations”?

This is the path that Australia is following. Once again, the media is content being ciphers for state terror. Blair was told that Iraq would descend into chaos, and yet he talks about “favouring freedom.” He is as contemptible as Milosevic, though his hands are far bloodier.

5 comments ↪
  • Shabadoo

    Speaking of war criminals, you still havent answered my question re: Slobo below.

    Also, when’s the old book coming out? Looks like it keeps getting delayed…is there a sinister Michael Danby plot afoot?

  • The Blair speech to Parliment was just plain twaddle. Did he write it on the plane on the way over, or after his most recent re-birthing experience?

    Lots of pats on the back for himself, for JH and Bush, but with little recognition of the very real and extremely serious threats facing the future of a United Democratic Iraq.

    As Rumsfeld, Cheney and Bush have been doing of recent, Blair breezed into Australia to push the new mantra of a War Against Extremism. Not Terror. Extremism, not even Extremists. Whatever this ‘Global War’ is supposed to be, it’s no longer about reacting/offensive or
    pre-emption/defensive, now he wants us all to join him and Howard and Bush on their War On…Bad Ideas.

    But like Terror, what actually constitutes an Extremist Threat is still very vague. Perhaps that is the idea. Launch a War against directly unspecificed enemies, and then you can keep it going for as long as the majority will tolerate the shocking redirection of hundreds of billions of dollars from education and health into bombs and guns.

    Comply or suffer the consequences.

  • John Ryan

    I tend to think that Milosevic was a far worse criminal that Blair,Blair is on a power trip and like Howard he is fond of kissing Bushes arse,the UK is not the only nation who is taken for granted in these matters but at least they got their people out of the US concentration camp in Cuba, unlike our cowardly bastards who will not say boo to upset George and the pack of idiots in power in the US at the moment.

  • Addamo

    Blair is responsibel for more innocent deaths than Milosevic ever was.

  • Leo Braun

    Antony: "This is the path that Australia is following. Once again, the media is content being ciphers for state terror"… Courtesy of devious charlatans ingenuity knack. Who knew only too well how to use falsehood for the basest purposes, then never ever to admit any wrong. Synonymous with the racist ashke-Nazis who have known better than any others on earth how the falsehood and calumny can be exploited. Isn't their very existence, was founded on one great lie? Namely that Jews are a religious interbreed, when in reality they are a unique race!

    Emancipated within the parallel universes where bloody apartheid was designated for the Jew lesser brethren bundled together with the gullible Goyim and Shiksas. Courtesy of Jewanderthal's ingenuity knack — it's so amazing and in fact they being nothing short of astounding. As now again the shocking act of a terrorism being exploited by a little man, who has rewritten his past, to make himself look bigger and better (than he really is).

    Once again, fear and outrage is being used, to transform quickly civil society into the police state, by the little man with a big voice. Once again a glib opportunist (lying rodent) of a dubious character, is promising us the safety (at the cost of our civil liberty) if zionazi powers at the Capital Hill being greatly expanded. Once again, such a small impotent man to be rocketed into the position of ever increasing power (against any chance of the random probability).

    Once again (considering the merit of a creature), such could never occurred without a help of those very powerful, behind the scenes. Once again the enemy is an insidious, all pervasive evil which had no country but host nations. Whose ideology is tied direct to religion. Once again an enemy list grows to include those, arbitrarily deemed to be sympathetic for the Semitic underdog. Once again the enemy so insidious within, has quickly become anyone who dares to question the little man, in charge.

    Once again the New World Order asserts itself. To be called by the exact same name, as before. Once again an enemy is Semitic people. Once again a newly formed police state justifies torture as necessary. Once again a newly formed police state pursues evil agenda of the World Empire via coalition of the willing connivers propped military aggression in a self-defence.

    Now call it a huge coincidence (if you will), but the Jew grandfather of the little man in question, was actually hauled before the USA Congress during WWII, under charges of trading with the enemy! Known then as the Nazi Third Reich and oddly enough the New World Order.

    Yet we need not to accept any diabolically plagued hegemony, if we recognise that there is choice once in a life time via solemn our public opinion. Now striving all over the world, definitely as never before. Make no mistake, it's an epic struggle. Where alternative (if we fail to speak about it right now), is not just a conquest of far away countries, it's the conquest of us. Of our minds, our humanity and our self-respect. If we to remain silent, the victory over us is assured.