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.

Failing standards noticed

Israel has a serious international image problem:

Israel ranked bottom in the Q3 2006 Anholt Nation Brands Index (NBI). Authored by government advisor Simon Anholt and powered by global market intelligence solutions provider GMI (Global Market Insite, Inc.), the Index surveyed 25,903 online consumers across 35 countries about their perceptions of those countries across six areas of national competence: Investment and Immigration, Exports, Culture and Heritage, People, Governance and Tourism. The NBI is the first analytical ranking of the world’s nation brands.

“Israel’s brand is by a considerable margin the most negative we have ever measured in the NBI, and comes bottom of the ranking on almost every question,” states report author Simon Anholt.

Anholt believes that the politics of a nation can affect every single aspect of a person’s perception about a country. In the light of the recent announcement that a team has been tasked with re-branding Israel, he comments that to succeed in permanently changing the country’s image, the country has to be prepared to change its behavior. He reiterates his strong belief that a reputation cannot be constructed: it has to be earned. He concludes: “If Israel’s intention is to promote itself as a desirable place to live and invest in, the challenge appears to be a steep one.”

Nation Brands Index Israel highlights

* Israel came last in each area – by a long margin
* Americans ranked Israel just slightly above China in terms of its conduct in the areas of international peace and security
* Of the 36 countries ranked, there is nowhere that respondents would like to visit less than Israel
* Israel’s people were also voted the most unwelcoming in the world

These results are unsurprising (and refreshing). Despite the best efforts of Zionist lobby groups and many Western nations, Israel’s behaviour in the occupied territories and Lebanon is rightly seen by the global population as immoral and a threat to world security. Even with the constant media insistence of publishing blindly pro-Zionist propaganda, it’s encouraging to read that such efforts are failing miserably.

When complete US support starts to falter, Israel may actually have to become a responsible world citizen.

UPDATE: So how, you may ask, will Israel attempt to counter its woeful international image? Yes, with more bombastic propaganda.

5 comments ↪
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  • viva peace

    Propaganda wars are hardly new. From 1967 until Gorbachev the Arabs were fortunate that their propaganda was conducted by the Soviets. Even though the Islamofascists have their cyber-soldiers assiduously running the cyber-propaganda routes I fear they are not very good at it.

  • Suze

    If the GIYUS community there is any possible way to spin the strangulation of Gaza they are quite mad.

  • Hmmm, I have some vague memory of Israel's image problem being quantified a while back. This must be a recurring problem. Strange that… As I recall, some of the recommendations (probably from some expensive, high powered US ad agency) involved such nice touches as painting the attack helicopters nice colours (pink?). A gaily coloured helicopter raining destruction down upon Palestinian homes must be of great comfort to the people living within.

  • orang

    Best one is when the Blonde Babe spokeswoman from southern England or some mid European accent is the one to explain that we shelled the Palis because it was an accident and what do you do when they keep terrorising you – you understand don't you?