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.

Not quite to plan

Oops:

A series of strategic errors by the Bush Administration in its War on Terror has left Iran holding virtually all the cards in the power play of the Middle East, according to a report by Britain’s most influential think-tank published today.

The report from the Royal Institute of International Affairs at Chatham House – entitled Iran, its neighbours and the regional crises – paints a bleak picture of the prospects for the United States and its Western allies as they try to put a cap on Iran’s nuclear programme.

It describes Iran as a state that sits with “confident ease” in the region and says, crucially, that Iran has replaced the United States as the most influential power in Iraq, able to influence events on the street and not just behind the security barricades of Baghdad’s Green Zone.

But the Bush administration, bless ’em, still has a few tricks up its sleeve:

A Penn State study shows that the use of embedded reporters by major newspapers did affect the number and the type of stories published, resulting in more articles about the U.S. soldiers’ personal lives and fewer articles about the impact of the war on Iraqi civilians.

“The majority of war coverage in the study heavily emphasized the soldier’s experiences, of the war while downplaying the effects of the invasion on the Iraqi people,” said Andrew M. Lindner, a graduate student in sociology at Penn State.

“This study offers the first systematic documentation of the substantive content of the war coverage,” he noted. “Many critics of the embedded reporting program rely on individual anecdotes or stories, but no one else has completed a thorough analysis of the coverage itself.”

After all, who really cares about the Iraqi people? Post “liberation”, they really shouldn’t be complaining.

3 comments ↪
  • Reading that Chatham House report (or the report of the report, to be correct), one almost begins to understand the crazy Bush White House thinking: they probably feel they are now so trapped in a corner now that there is no alternative but one, the use of force against Iran.

    But as the report says: "The great problem facing the US is that Iran has superseded it as the most influential power in Iraq. This influence has a variety of forms but all can be turned against the US presence in Iraq with relative ease, and almost certainly would heighten US casualties to the point where a continued presence might not be tenable".

    Margaret Thatcher famously said "the lady's not for turning" and a generation of politicians have blindly followed her lead: never admit mistakes, ever.

    But things in Iraq will not improve any time soon if the US coalition cannot admit to a whole host of tragic mistakes, and take urgent steps to rectify them.

  • Addamo_01

    Don't hold your breath about these people admitting mistakes. They are following Goebbels phylosphy like prayer book.

    During World War II, the predecessor of the CIA, the Office of Strategic Services, described how the Germans used the Big Lie: "[They] never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it."

    What is ruly remarkable, is how these people fail to learn from their mistakes. There is a theory that Israel's actions against Hezbollah was the result of pressure from Washington, which makes sense, becuase Israel are not usually that stupid.

    The US invades Iraq and Afghanistan and empowers Iran. Israel goes after Hezbollha by attacking Lebanon and empowers Hezbollah. That kind of stupidity is too rare.

  • Well, the WWII Germans who used the Big Lie may have dragged their own people along with them for a time, but ultimately they were defeated by their enemies (the Allies), who were incenced by such lies and the atrocities which accompanied them.

    Whilst ever Bush, Blair and Co go on winning domestic elections with such lies, international hatred of their hypocrisy will just continue to grow… Same goes for Australia (as a former ambassador to Israel has warned).

    In that atmosphere, unfortunately, it is very hard to see any alternative future but one that includes continued terrorist attacks.

    I just wonder if our corrupt, lying governments are actually prepared to accept – indeed, incite – such attacks as a means of ensuring their continued grasp on power? I am 41 years old now and I am not prepared to spend the rest of my life watching such absurd crap unfold.