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.

Murder, courtesy of us

Both the Howard Government and the ineffective Labor opposition have shown complete disregard for Israeli aggression in the Middle East. Greens leader Bob Brown issues a sensible statement:

“The Prime Minister needs to reveal if Australia is still sending arms to Israel, and if so, exports should be suspended,” Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.

“Past questions asked by the Greens in the Senate have revealed that defence exports to Israel were worth almost $10 million in 2004, the last year for which figures have been made public. In the last five years the Howard government has approved the export of weapons and equipment including military explosive devices, military electronic equipment, parts for military vehicles and aircraft and armoured equipment,” Senator Brown said.

“Instead of arming one side of the conflict the Prime Minister should be trying to achieve a cease fire.”

Senator Brown said that global coverage of ambulances being targeted in Lebanon, and a United Nations post being destroyed killing UN personnel, will disgust millions around the world. 

A leading British politician has made similar calls in relation to arms sales to the Jewish state. Israel wouldn’t be as lethal without the help of its Western allies.

21 comments ↪
  • Israel would be a shadow of itself were it not for decisive Western support, military, economic, and political. How long could Israel maintain its aggression if the shipments of weapons from the US were stopped? Probably less than a week.

    Well done Bob Brown. One of the first casualties of power is the truth. It never seizes to amaze me that even when Israel endangers Australian citizens (not to mention Australian Government officials) by bombing Lebanon, the Government places the blame on Hezbollah and defends Israel. Instead of condemning Israel's criminal invasion, the Australian Government has focused on the logistics of retrieving Australian citizens as though it were dealing with a natural disaster. Of course, to decision makers in Canberra and Washington DC the distinction between natural disasters and some man made disasters may not be readily apparent.

  • I am always glad to see Iqbal comment here.

  • Suze

    I listened to the podcast of Robert Fisk's address at Maquarie Uni- in 1996 Israel shelled the UN compound in Quran, Southern Lebanon, where refugees were sheltering. The casualties, more than 100, were mainly women and children. Israel claimed this was accidental, despite video footage of an Israeli surveillance plane circling the site during the shelling. Sounds horribly familiar doesn't it?

  • -a

    Thank you for an excellent blog. despite the terrible state of mass media reporting the emergence of so many voices that have been rational, articulate and passionate in their denouncement of the terrible violence being done to lebanon has been an inspiration. it is absolutely vital for jewish people who do not support this action to speak out, especially because anger against the state of israel will sometimes manifest itself as anti-semitism. it is vital for us all to differentiate between the policies of terror practiced by some and understand that they are not done in name of all.
    -a

  • JohD

    I don't know why Israel is at a loss to spin their humiliation in Lebanon. It is simple. If you want to lose a war in the Middle East, just make sure Jordan is on your side. No doubt Israel is losing because of Jordanian support.

  • Just to show that we commos – sorry Jewish anti-semitic commos – feel the need to provide an alternative medium to the crud fed to us daily by our television and newspaper reports – mostly with pro-Israel bias, here is an article from our well-known commo group, Socialist Alternative, which might open a few windows on what is not being revealed:

    <a>STOP THE SLAUGHTER IN LEBANON

    And for those living in Melbourne, there is a demo starting outside State Library in Swanston Street at 1pm.

  • orang

    Bob Brown no matter how badly they try and smear is one of the very few with scruples and not afraid to air them. Good on ya Bobby.

  • Addamo

    Bob Brown no matter how badly they try and smear is one of the very few with scruples and not afraid to air them.

    Which is why he'll never get elected to any position of power, sadly.

  • Adam

    Israel on its own has no power, no will and certainly no existence, the only power which it needs is the US. The power of Israel is really the power of US and as long as US remain the super powers of the world the more protection Israel will get and a reason to exist. The US can remain the super power without the help of any other nation whereas Israel depends on US for its existence; just like a baby depends on its mother for total support likewise is the relationship between US and Israel.

    If the US decline in power around the world, much like the British rule and Empire declined around the world, then Israel existence will decline equally. The secret to Israel is the US.

  • Addamo

    If the US decline in power around the world, much like the British rule and Empire declined around the world, then Israel existence will decline equally. The secret to Israel is the US.

    Exactly, and the US decline is pretty inevitable. That is why the Us s trying to secure energy sources around the world and doing it;s best to prevent other countries from rivaling it in any way. This is futile of course, but the Us has not other option.

    The impotence of the Us is what is driving Israel now. it sees the wrioting on teh wall, and is desperate to secure itself so that it may one day become independent of the. Israel needs abudant land, abundant fresh water and abundant chep energy, none of which it has access to at the moment.

    The neocons, Douglas Feith and Richard Perle, recognized this expansionist dynamic and urged Israeli leaders – specifically, then-Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – to make a "clean break" with the failed defensive policies of the past, and go on the offensive, vowing to end Israeli dependence on America by freeing up the economy and launching a preventive war against neighboring Arab states. The idea was to make Israel independent both economically and militarily.

  • Adam

    The idea was to make Israel independent both economically and militarily.

    The only real way this could happen is either destabilizes the entire Arab region including Iran and Pakistan, where no other nation can rival Israel in the short term and long term, and the other to control the region oil resources. Failing these two options Israel has no option but to depend on US for its generous donations yearly. With the added benefit of having powerful Jewish/Israeli members in US lobby makes it less likely for Israel to claim independence from US in the short term.

    Without a doubt the US and Israel do spy on each other ensuring both parties are kept sweet, as US needs Israel to remain strong in Middle East (and to eliminate any threat that might arise) and where Israel needs US for extra security at International level in order to fulfill US long term region change plan to have more unlimited access to oil and other resources.

  • Captain

    Well done Bob. True to form. Israel should be defenseless.

  • Addamo_01

    No it shoudlnt; be defenseless, but nor should it use it's arsenal to threaten the region.

  • Adam

    Israel should be defenseless

    Just like the defenseless Palestinians, make it fair all around

  • captain

    No, the pals have their children to use as suicide bombers.

  • Addamo_01

    No, the pals have their children to use as suicide bombers.

    And Israeli's get them them F-16s to drop on people. The benefits of having rich parents is that you can pay someone else to do the dirty work for you.

  • Captain

    No, its the benefits of caring about your children.

  • Addamo_01

    No, its the benefits of caring about your children.

    When they are pyromaniacs, it's hardly a good idea to give them maches.

  • orang

    captain

    "Jul 27th, 2006 at 12:19 pm

    No, the pals have their children to use as suicide bombers. "

    You know you're becoming like a fucking drippy dick with your meme of smearing the Palestinians. You get the shots, take the anti-biotics think you got it covered and then the 1st piss of the next day, there you are again, Mr Drippy Dick, the Maggot, "Captain", (Please God how did I deserve this, whatever it was I didn't mean it, please make it go away-OK she was a Shiksa-was I wrong? Technically is this Bestiality?)

    Shoo, go away.

  • Captain

    It is the truth, not me, that is smearing the pals. I have had enough of them holding the world to hostage, blowing up their children and my relatives. Misusing their resources to inculcate hatred instead of education. They never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity. I just wish the pals preferred peace over their bloodthirsty hatred of Jews. I mean why would they elect a group that was theologically committed to murdering all Jews. Now thats what I call a real slur.

  • orang

    Maybe because your relatives missed the boat so many times because of they are like aliens, colonizers, hating the people around them treating them like Abbo's and Bedo's. Kiss my arse you sap.