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.

The debate The Oz doesn’t want to have

My following article appears in today’s edition of Crikey:

Is a debate about the Israel-Palestine conflict too hot for The Australian to handle?

In his recent controversial book Palestine: Peace not Apartheid, former US president Jimmy Carter describes the Israeli occupation of the West Bank as worse than apartheid South Africa.

I was commissioned in December by The Australian’s opinion editor, Tom Switzer, to write an article about the book and the associated controversy (he had published three Israel/Palestine-related articles of mine in 2006.) The piece was due to run in the days after Christmas when the paper was to be overseen by fill-in editor Nick Cater (replacing holidaying editor-in-chief Chris Mitchell.)

I was soon informed that Cater refused to print the article, although he gave no reason to Switzer’s summer replacement, Sian Powell. When Switzer returned from holidays he told me he hoped to prevail over Cater’s intransigence and publish my article. I’ve now been informed that the paper will not do so. The latest Cater excuse is that my recent Sydney Morning Herald essay on blogging criticised the mainstream media (though not The Australian) and therefore I clearly didn’t respect the Murdoch organ. Really.

Switzer is appalled at the level of censorship displayed in this case (and cannot recall another incident where similar moves have occurred). He had even commissioned an opposing piece by Muslim dissident Irshad Manji to counter my article.

My article simply explained the controversy surrounding Carter’s book, the hysterical response by the Zionist lobby in the US (the latest example is here) and that whenever Israel faces its greatest criticism the usual suspects in the media try and shut down debate.

Carter’s observations are remarkably similar to comments by any number of mainstream Israelis. For anybody who has spent time in the West Bank, as I have, Carter’s analysis is both obvious and long overdue. The Australian media has virtually ignored the firestorm created around the book (except for a shallow article in last weekend’s Australian).

If The Australian is serious about “keeping the nation informed”, this latest example of suppression reeks of desperation, intellectual laziness and arrogance. Its readers deserve better.

11 comments ↪
  • Addamo

    And still your detractors pretend that you are only imagining things when you claim you are being censored. Unbelievable.

  • Polywise

    "and therefore I clearly didn’t respect the Murdoch organ"

    Do you think Wendy Deng respects the Murdoch organ?

    So many jokes, so little time.

  • Aaron Lane

    Well, he isn't being censored, as The Australian is under no obligation to publish anything. If I demand that Antony publish an opinion piece I write on his blog and he refuses, does that qualify as censorship? No. It's his blog. Let him do what he likes with it.

    Antony's piece on blogging was rubbish, by the way. One of the accusations he levelled against the msm was partisanship; his article was hardly a unbiased, sober account of the blogosphere, however.

    Still, The Australian shouldn't have commissioned the article if the weren't going to publish it.

  • Oh, so if they commissioned the article and didn't print it, that isn't censorship??? The Australian is just joining in with all the other Australian media and censoring – or self-censoring those issues which they find too controversial to consider.

    So they do the work of the government, of the zionist lobby, of all the other right wing reactionaries with which this country is currently overloaded.

    Just listen to Downer today on David Hicks – see what I mean???

  • Oh, and by the way, apartheid in South Africa was a starting point for Israel in the occupied territories – they have just learned how to refine it to an even crueller degree, which amounts to ethnic cleansing, which is just another word for genocide.

  • Addamo

    Aaron,

    You're just a shill for Israel. Could you make it any more obvious?

    Ant's piece on the blogosphere was nothing controversial. It was self evident and it is obvious that is not what the editor was pissed about.

    Carter's book is a best seller thanks to weasel like Dershowitz. You should buy a copy. You will learn a lot from it.

  • Addamo

    BTW, Here is a video fo the presentation Carter gave to Brandeis University.

    Does this sound like a hate filled anti-Semite to you?
    http://www.ichblog.eu/content/view/204/59/

  • Pingback: Murdoch’s Middle East story at Antony Loewenstein()

  • Waddy

    Looks like censorship to me. Let's see if the Oz publishes a different-source commentary on the Carter book controversy (expect a lazy rip-off from one of News Ltd's other rags). I agree with Antony's characterisation of the Oz piece on the Brandeis Uni event as 'shallow'.

    I have read a lot of criticism of the use of 'Apartheid' word in Carter's book title – but I don't recall one critic actually analysing the factual basis for Carter's choice of words.

    Antony: If the Oz wont publish your piece, can we see it somewhere else?

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Watch this space, my Carter piece will appear in the next week or so.

  • Aaron Lane says Antony "isn’t being censored, as The Australian is under no obligation to publish anything." He argues that Murdoch can publish or not publish whatever he likes, coz it's his paper. But then he dismisses Antony's accusations of msm partisanship! Go figure…!

    You can't have it both ways, Aaron. Either Murdoch is running a respectable national newspaper according to traditional journalist ethics (which includes hands-off management and editorial independence), or he is running a self-serving propaganda tool for his Big Business golfing partners and their political cronies.

    Most thinking people have given up on FAUX News and Murdoch's tabloid press as predominantly entertainment-based pseudo-journalism. The Australian still purports to be something more than that, but it's reputation is sinking quickly.