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.

Please don’t report that

Afghanistan is a failed state, a nation run by warlords, drug runners and terrorists. Australian troops are supporting a regime that is just full of good ideas:

The war against the Taliban has gone badly these last months, but Afghanistan’s national intelligence agency has devised a secret plan to reverse the tide of bad news.

In a coordinated action this week, the intelligence operatives drove up to TV stations and newspapers in muscular SUVs and dropped off an unsigned letter ordering journalists to report more favourable news about the government.

In particular, the letter said, they should avoid “materials which deteriorate people’s morale and cause disappointment to them.”

The security directorate’s letter also demands special protection for the feelings of the mujahedeen – veterans of the 1980s guerrilla groups that fought Soviet occupation. Many mujahedeen leaders are reviled in Afghanistan for destroying the country in civil war after the Soviet withdrawal – but they regained positions of power by providing the ground forces that helped the U.S.-led military coalition topple the Taliban in 2001.

They are not to be criticized or called “warlords” – a common term in Afghanistan for the more powerful among them, it specified. And Afghans called back by Karzai from exile abroad to take posts in the government are not to be called “westernized.”

And who is really behind such moves?

Whatever the incident may mean about the maturing skills of Afghanistan’s CIA-mentored intelligence community, it is just more bad news for the 4-year-old independent press.

10 comments ↪
  • Addamo

    Hey we brought them freedom and democract, including the freedom to suppress the bad news – just like here in the West.

  • viva peace

    Yes it sure does seem as though Afghanistan has little future. But what should the US do? Pull out? That would be even worse as god knows who would fill the vacuum.

  • Westernised? Sort of like Hamid 'Unocal' Karzai isn't westernised, I suppose.

  • i wonder what it's like in all those luxury hotels i read about some time ago, being built for oil execs and their cronies and probably staffed by near-slave locals just happy to be at a job where they're not shot at. i picked that up at corrente, AL. thanks.

  • Addamo

    I don't see how pulling out of Afghanistan woudl be any worse than staying there. It is identical to Iraq but on a smaller scale. Perhaps the US could learn from it.

    If the Us pulled out, the Taliban would continue to regroup, the warlords woiudl reign and opium porduction would spiral.

    If the US were to tremain, the Taliban would continue to regroup, the warlords woiudl reign and opium porduction would spiral.

    The only difrerence would be that less foreigners woudl be killed. That never quite seems to be facored into the equation.

  • viva peace

    Addamo

    Are you being serious? What an extraordinary understanding of geostrategic machinations you have! Here is some homework. Go to your bookshelf. Take down the atlas. Poor yourself a glass of wine. Find a comfy bit of living room floor. Open the atlas to "A." Flick through until you get to "Afghanistan." Have a look around the general vicinity of "Afghanistan" to the north, south, east, and west.

    Return to us and re-answer the question. 😉

  • Addamo

    Thanks for cutting the bullshit for once Viva,

    So apart from oil pipelines, the US is there to use the place to launch attacks on Iran, which is explains why they are doing such a obscenely lousy job of bringing freedom and democray to it as promised.

    Can't let a small issue like civil war get int eh way of turnign Iran into rubble now can we? Predictably, you remain oblivious to the blood that will be spilled along the wayy, but hey, it's not like any of that blood matters now is it?

  • viva peace

    Addamo

    You need to srop your delusions that in geopolitics the U.S. is the only game in town. Now back to that Atlas. Chop, chop!

  • Greetings from Kabul, Ant. Yes, I'm still here. And leftvegdrunk pointed me to this post of yours. I have blogged about it too and have the curious three-page document in my in-box.

    UN is not too happy about it, so I would not be surprised it it gets disavowed. Looks like Karzai has already partially disavowed it.

    Hope you are well.

  • Addamo

    Viva

    "You need to srop your delusions that in geopolitics the U.S. is the only game in town. Now back to that Atlas. Chop, chop!"

    Delusions? Hmmm let me see, the US has now many hundreds of military bases dotted around the planet. Here's some homework for you Viva, name another country that has even one tenth the number of bases?

    After that, look up the existence of the tooth fairy and give yourself time for the realisation to set in.