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.

Over and out

The US is losing the “war on anything it doesn’t like“.

27 comments ↪
  • Winning or losing the "War on Terror" is a difficult and subjective assessment but certainly this quote in the article rings true:

    "You can always slaughter terrorists — there are endless reserves of them. We should not be attacking the effects of terrorism but its causes: Wahhabite ideology, Saudi Arabia and the Muslim Brotherhood. But no one will touch any of those,"

    The Saudi's oil power mean that their terrorist connections and the popularity of Wahhabism in the Kingdom are not openly questioned or countered.

    Pete

  • boredinHk

    "You can always slaughter terrorists — there are endless reserves of them. We should not be attacking the effects of terrorism but its causes: Wahhabite ideology, Saudi Arabia and the Muslim Brotherhood. But no one will touch any of those," Chouet argued."

    I have to agree with Pete and this quote from the linked piece is a beauty.

    Who will step up and address the repugnant rubbish that is Wahhabite idealogy ? Anyone see a coalition getting together on this one ?

  • viva peace

    Pete

    I have to agree with you. I really pray that a HUGE part of America's game plan is to kill all the Wahhabists and the entire Al-Saud family. It is these two poxes on humanity who are financing all the Islamofascist nutjobs. The US could easily all those mofos down and nobody would care less.

  • orang

    The article also says,

    "The Americans have been stuck inside this idea of a 'war on terror' since September 11, they are not asking the right questions."
    and
    "We're clearly losing. Today, Bin Laden, Al-Qaeda and their allies have only one indispensable ally: the US' foreign policy towards the Islamic world."

    which I would have thought are the main points of the article.

    The Wahabism reference is to remind us that it has been around for a long time with the US not giving a fuck because it is the business of their buddies the house of Saud -who incidently are despised by most of the Middle East.

  • boredinHk

    Far out – that is the closest I have seen to a consensus on this blog !

    Orang and Viva Peace you are close to agreeing – better watch out.

  • Keith

    Anyone see a coalition getting together on this one ?

    You'd have to have broad support…

    Far out – that is the closest I have seen to a consensus on this blog !
    Orang and Viva Peace you are close to agreeing – better watch out.

    Well there you have it.

  • orang

    For a minute there I thought you were going to say Bana had a son called Arafat….

    So the lesson from this is if you’re into dirty tricks never trust the help of the Brits or the Americans because later on they’ll fuck you.

    Or,

    America and Britain would rather have Nazis than communists.- well that’s old news, we all knew that.

  • smiths

    i hate to say it, but its the blowback thing again,

    In the 1920's there was a young Egyptian named al Bana. And al Bana formed this nationalist group called the Muslim Brotherhood. Al Bana was a devout admirer of Adolph Hitler and wrote to him frequently. So persistent was he in his admiration of the new Nazi Party that in the 1930's, al Bana and the Muslim Brotherhood became a secret arm of Nazi Intelligence.

    The Muslim Brotherhood began to expand in scope and influence during World War II. They even had a Palestinian section headed by the grand Mufti of Jerusalem, one of the great bigots of all time. Here, too, was a man – – The grand Mufti of Jerusalem was the Muslim Brotherhood representative for Palestine. These were undoubtedly Arab Nazis. The Grand Mufti, for example, went to Germany during the war and helped recruit an international SS division of Arab Nazis. They based it in Croatia and called it the “Handjar” Muslim Division, but it was to become the core of Hitler's new army of Arab fascists that would conquer the Arab peninsula from then on to Africa — grand dreams.

    At the end of World War II, the Muslim Brotherhood was wanted for war crimes. Their German intelligence handlers were captured in Cairo. The whole net was rolled up by the British Secret Service. Then a horrible thing happened.

    Instead of prosecuting the Nazis – – the Muslim Brotherhood – – the British government hired them. They brought all the fugitive Nazi war criminals of Arab and Muslim descent into Egypt, and for three years they were trained on a special mission. The British Secret Service wanted to use the fascists of the Muslim Brotherhood to strike down the infant state of Israel in 1948. Only a few people in the Mossad know this, but many of the members of the Arab Armies and terrorist groups that tried to strangle the infant State of Israel were the Arab Nazis of the Muslim Brotherhood.

    Britain was not alone. The French Intelligence service cooperated by releasing the Grand Mufti and smuggling him to Egypt, so all of the Arab Nazis came together. So, from 1945 to 1948, the British Secret Service protected every Arab Nazi they could, but they failed to quash the State of Israel.

    What the British did then, they sold the Arab Nazis to the predecessor of what became the CIA. It may sound stupid; it may sound evil, but it did happen. The idea was that we were going to use the Arab Nazis in the Middle East as a counterweight to the Arab communists. Just as the Soviet Union was funding Arab communists, we would fund the Arab Nazis to fight against. And lots of secret classes took place. We kept the Muslim Brotherhood on our payroll.

    But the Egyptians became nervous. Nasser ordered all of the Muslim Brotherhood out of Egypt or be imprisoned, and we would execute them all. During the 1950's, the CIA evacuated the Nazis of the Muslim Brotherhood to Saudi Arabia. Now when they arrived in Saudi Arabia, some of the leading lights of the Muslim Brotherhood like Azzam, became the teachers in the Madrasas, the religious schools. And there they combined the doctrines of Nazism with this weird Islamic cult, Wahhabiism.
    http://www.navyseals.com/community/articles/artic

    any problem we have now, the cia created back then, and i'll bet you my left testicle that the problems they are creating right now, we'll be dealing with in thirty years time

  • Don Wigan

    Thanks for that, smiths. I think it puts a lot into more historical perspective.

    To Viva, Ali et al, I've got no problems with Israel's right to exist, especially after all the origins. But they have to be careful not to become as oppressive and intolerant as many of their original enemies.

  • JohD

    This is like being a fly on the wall at a neo-con/nazi convention.

    I have to agree with you. I really pray that a HUGE part of America’s game plan is to kill all the Wahhabists and the entire Al-Saud family. It is these two poxes on humanity who are financing all the Islamofascist nutjobs. The US could easily all those mofos down and nobody would care less.

    Who will step up and address the repugnant rubbish that is Wahhabite idealogy ? Anyone see a coalition getting together on this one ?

    What did a Wahhabi ever do to you? There is definitely something leaking out your radiator, and it is ugly. Far as I can tell, Wahhabis are no better or worse than Ultra-Orthodox Jews. If we cannot stand a little difference, then the society is not worth the bother at all.

    You guys need to stop drinking that kool-aid.

  • JohD

    Incidently, there is a world of difference between the Wahhabis, and the Najdi tribe of Saud. Wahhabism is a doctrine promoted by the Najdi tribe to eliminate the tribal loyalty and the Arab sense of genealogical historical continuity. So what remained was blood-bonded tribe of Arab raiders on the one hand – Saudi, and a mass of Bedouin turned peasants on the other called the Ikhwan. The result is that the Saudis are the least tribal Arabs there are – except for the Saudis that is.

    Wahhabism is nothing more than an internal control mechanism by the Saudi Regime to perpetuate their dominance. It has little relevance for the wider world, except if you are Muslim of course. That is why Wahhabi missionary work is so hyperactive amongst the Muslim community; to ensure their control of Muslim holy cities. It has nothing to do with the non-Muslim world. Osama bin Laden and the Muslim Broterhood is anti-Wahhabi, because they see it as a tool to ensure Saudi dominance. It is an internal Muslim conflict.

    This inflammatory anti-Wahhabi rhetoric is ignorant knee-jerk paranoia, and certainly more dangerous than any 'islamofacist' could possibly be. Fascism, incidently, is the marriage between the State and the corporate – corporatism. Much too close to modern neo-liberalism for comfort.

  • Captain

    Far as I can tell, Wahhabis are no better or worse than Ultra-Orthodox Jews

    you are obviously an ignorant antisemite.

  • orang

    you must be a stinking ….wait a minute are we being ad hominem here?

  • JohD

    What? Is it an insult to compare Ultra Orthodox Jews to Wahhabis or something? Clearly the intolernace comes form those who would object. Are all Wahhabis monsters, or something? This racist characterisation of Saudi Arabians rolls effortlessly of the tongues of some here. No differences between people is to be tolerated at all, it seems. All it takes is to indentify some unpleasnat feature, and it is open slather on them; targets for weapons of mass destruction. Obviously embarrassment is not even an issue.

  • Addamo

    Viva,

    You're obviously an itelligent guy, which is why your arguments come off as pure hackery when they are so overtly blinkered.

    The Wahhabis are extorting money from teh Saudi's by htreats of overthrowing their rule. Wh is keeping thee leaches on the throne? Western governments of course, and who are they taking their orders from?

    The Wahhabis movement is driven by what is taking place on the ground. There is noting in the Arab or Persian DNA that loves extremism any more than Wetsrn countries. There woudl be no movement to finance if there was nopthing to fuel the anger in the Middle East in the first place. If the West insist on manipulating and controlling the Middle East, the outcoms will lead to resentment on a scale we are witnessing today.

    Captain, take your medication and stop stling from daddy's bottle of blue pills.

  • boredinHK

    "Wahhabism is nothing more than an internal control mechanism by the Saudi Regime to perpetuate their dominance"

    Not all correct but it is part of the story. Give ideologues due credit for being very driven .

    And I dislike all kinds of extremism but I don't think it necessary to list all extremists every time I mention one of them. Let Wahhabbists speak for themselves .

    "This inflammatory anti-Wahhabi rhetoric is ignorant knee-jerk paranoia, and certainly more dangerous than any ‘islamofacist’ could possibly be. " No sense of proportion evident in this little statement.

  • JohD

    Is that even supposed to be intelligible? Who the hell knows waht you are talking about, except that 'extremists' and 'Wahhabi' are mentioned. whooooooo!

  • boredinHK

    On Wahhabiism-

    "It has little relevance for the wider world, except if you are Muslim of course. That is why Wahhabi missionary work is so hyperactive amongst the Muslim community; to ensure their control of Muslim holy cities. It has nothing to do with the non-Muslim world.( Ehh?) Osama bin Laden and the Muslim Broterhood is anti-Wahhabi, because they see it as a tool to ensure Saudi dominance. It is an internal Muslim conflict." Joh D on the job.

    "But when the Saudis got wealthy, they bought a lot of silence. This is a very harsh cult. The Wahhabiism was only practiced by two nations, the Taliban and Saudi Arabia. That's how extreme it is. It really has nothing to do with Islam." Courtesy of Smith's article .Which continues as follows

    "For the Saudis, there was a ruler in charge of Saudi Arabia, and they were the new home of the Muslim Brotherhood, and fascism and extremism were mingled in these schools. And there was a young student who paid attention – – and Azzam's student was named Osama Bin Ladin. Osama Bin Ladin was taught by the Nazis of the Muslim Brotherhood who had emigrated to Saudi Arabia. "

    Wow – who to believe? Maybe AL and Ed squires can get to work with some unbiased investigations ?

    Thanks Smiths ,the link is a good read.

  • orang

    Well I'm not sure if that article is the defining moment on this topic.

  • JohD

    It is so ignorant, it believes the Muslim Brotherhood is Wahhabi. That is what we deal with, pseudo analysis from pseudo experts. Who cares, as long as the result is enough fog to push an agenda of hatred. It makes one wonder just who is going to be prosecuted after the inevitable holocaust of Muslim people as a consequence. We should be taking notes and collecting evidence, so that people cannot claim to be innocent and only following the prevailing wisdom. There is a difference between being misled and actively pushing this garbage.

  • Comical_Ali

    Far as I can tell, Wahhabis are no better or worse than Ultra-Orthodox Jews.

    Ultra-Orhtodox Jews fund synangogues around the world where Rabbis preach & distribute literature advocating the head lopping & murder of all infidels.

    Unfortunatley, many Jews have taken up their call to arms and have massacred the commuters of London, spain NY, not to mention the club goers of Bali. They have also chopped up little catholic school girls in Aceh and you can find their streaming snuff videos of head lopping via a good google search.

  • JohD

    Woww! Gee, you got us there Goebbels er .. Verwoed. Who on Earth would have imagined someone could be so brain-dead, but then Rascism & Bigotry is your stock-in-trade, and it seems you are all stocked up, so why hold back?

    I have always wondered about this propensity of Zionist to stick it to Muslims in general, now I am convinced it is jealousy. Wahhabis may not be flavour of the month right now, but that can directly be attributed to the dilleberate campaign by Zionist to inflame hatred against them by the use of the the basest imagery and exploitation of hatred for the other. What next? Presbyterians want to eliminate Jews and eat little children? How about Africans are barbarians and cannibals?

    Now Wahhabis may or may not be saintly people, but they do not teach the fantasies your cousins in the Mainstream Media insist they do, and that you promote with breathless enthusiasm.

    Tell us honestly, does the killing of 'wahhabis', and 'Baathist', and the 'Taliban' leave you panting for for? The mental image of you earnestly stroking your privates with fevor at the thought of all that dead anti-Semitic flesh is overwhelmingly conveyed by your correspondence here. Insn't it more fitting to conceal your deranged pederast nature by avoiding contact with normal human beings?

  • Comical_Ali

    Wahhabis may not be flavour of the month right now, but that can directly be attributed to the dilleberate campaign by Zionist to inflame hatred against them by the use of the the basest imagery and exploitation of hatred for the other. What next? Presbyterians want to eliminate Jews and eat little children? How about Africans are barbarians and cannibals?

    All the hatred which comes out of the Wahhabi mosques of Europe and all the proceeding terror attacks were either fabricated or staged by zionists, or better still Ultra-Othodox Jews.

    now I am convinced it is jealousy.

    I'm as green as a Leprechaun.

    Insn’t it more fitting to conceal your deranged pederast nature by avoiding contact with normal human beings?

    What with Kufrs?

  • Addamo

    All the hatred which comes out of the Wahhabi mosques of Europe and all the proceeding terror attacks were either fabricated or staged by zionists, or better still Ultra-Othodox Jews.

    You cant help yourself can you Comical? How about providing links and examples of these terrorist attacks and actualy documenting how many they killed? No, that would make Israel look bad, becasue when it comes down to body counts, you know you are backing a losing argument.

    Perhaps you are thus insisting that words and infalmatory statements are worse than th acts fo violence themselves. 6 Palesitnian children killed this week alone in Gaza, and not a peep out of you, Viva or Captain.

    Way to go guys.

  • JohD

    fabricated or staged by zionists

    I guess you can say that is what it is – fabrications – the stock-in-trade of Zionist everywhere. When in doubt, simply throw some accusations out there and hope the smear does its damage. For them, there are no people, no Arabs, and no Muslims, only 'Jihadist'. The object is to make sure that when you say Muslim, or Arab, people think 'terrorist'. Unrepentent Rascist, the lot of them.

  • Comical_Ali

    the london, madrid, Mumbia, Beslan etc were all fabricated by the zionists & utlra othrodox Jews

  • JohD

    Yes, it is a fabrication.

    Activities that were deemed revolutionary, radical, resistance, insurgency, war and atrocity is now called Islamic Militancy. Makes one wonder how we survived the supposed to peace & calm before we started antagonising Muslims.

    Muslims did not kill 3 million plus in Indochina, or 5 million in the DCR, or 1.5 million in Rwanda. Muslims did not run the death squads of South America. Muslims did not ethnically cleanse Palestine, and Muslims did not undertake the death march of the Red army. Come to think of it, neither were Muslims involved in the industrial scale beheading of thousands in a campaign to install secularism.

    I wonder what changed, it certainly was not Islam? Could it be that we ran out of other people to demonise and massacre?