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.

Independent Australian Jewish Voices

The following has been sent to many Australians over the last days. The response has been very encouraging. Stay tuned.

Dear Friend,

As you may be aware, a group of British Jews, including prominent figures, recently expressed their concern publicly that independent views on the Middle East were not adequately represented by official Jewish bodies. Their group, called ‘Independent Jewish Voices,’ issued a declaration that was published in the media and is available on their website: http://www.ijv.org.uk. This British group has received hundreds of signatures expressing support.

We are a group of Australian Jews who share their concerns and aims and we are now also seeking public support from fellow Jews. Our group, ‘Independent Australian Jewish Voices,’ has been established and our declaration of principles is in the message below and also on our website: http://iajv.org

We are seeking signatures and plan to publish our statement in mainstream newspapers such as The Melbourne Age, Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian and The Australian Jewish News within the next few weeks. By then we hope to have gathered significant indication of support in the community for our goals. A press release will also be issued at this time launching our initiative.

Signatures may be entered via email (iajv99 [at] gmail.com) and will be made public shortly on the website unless anonymity is requested. Please indicate full name, city, postcode and email address. Email addresses are required for confirmation but will not be made public or available to anyone else.

All signatures for publication will be shown on the website at the time we publish our statement in the media. A selection of these will be included with the published statement.

We aim to provide a more open forum for the expression of the full spectrum of opinions on issues concerning Jews and the Middle East.

We would be grateful if you could forward this email to any other Australian Jews you think might be interested and supportive.

For inquiries, please email iajv99 [at] gmail.com

Sincerely,

Peter Slezak
James Levy
Antony Loewenstein

————

Statement of Principles: A Call for an Alternative View

We are Jews of diverse opinions on the Middle East who share a deep concern about the current crisis in the region.

We are committed to ensuring a just peace that recognizes the legitimate national aspirations of both Israelis and Palestinians with a solution that protects the human rights of all.

We condemn violence by all parties, whether state sanctioned or not. We believe that Israel’s right to exist must be recognized and that Palestinians’ right to a homeland must also be acknowledged.

As Australians we are privileged to live in a democratic state that embodies the principles of tolerance and free speech. We feel there is an urgent need to hear alternative voices that should not be silenced by being labelled disloyal or “self-hating.”

Uncritical allegiance to Israeli government policy does not necessarily serve Israel’s best interests. Our concern for justice and peace in the Middle East is a legitimate opinion and should be met by reasoned argument rather than vilification and intimidation. In particular, we are concerned that the Jewish establishment does not represent the full range of Jewish opinion. Contrary to widespread concerns, anti-Semitism is not fuelled by Jews who publicly disagree with actions of the Jewish State.

Jews understand what it is to suffer racism and victimization and therefore we are not only concerned about anti-Semitism but also the demonisation of all other minorities.

We call upon fellow Jews to join us in supporting free debate to further the prospects of peace, security and human rights in the Middle East.

20 comments ↪
  • BenZ

    Certainly sounds interesting.

    Is the "Statement of Principles: A Call for an Alternative View" in this post, the statement to which I'd have my name appended? I want to know what I'm signing.

    Along the same lines, it's nice to know with whom one is associating. who is James Levy? I found (via Google) Peter Slezak's details and am comfortable, but nothing on James.

    Finally, a small point – any chance "victimization" could be changed to the Australian spelling?

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Few points.
    First up, James Levy is also at UNSW as an academic (just retired, I think.)
    You'll be signing the statement above (as on the website).
    As for the American spelling, see what I can do.
    The response is really encouraging thus far and much more will be revealed soon enough.
    Thanks.

  • BenZ

    Thanks Antony. Sounds good.

    Plus, I [i]love[/i] seeing my name in print 🙂
    May even be enough to make my find a copy of the Jewish News for the scrapbook. Gave up reading it years ago.

  • BenZ

    Err.. I also love it when I tag comments correctly. Sorry.

  • BenZ

    Sorry for the numerous posts.

    I searched UNSW website and found this: http://languages.arts.unsw.edu.au/Staff-Profiles/

    Is that the guy?

    If so, is he an Australian Jew? His involvement would explain the American spelling 😉

    I just checked the website. All is now clear.

  • viva peace

    Oh gawd. How tragic. For how much longer are you merely going to ape Americans? Get a Job!

  • Addamo

    Oh gawd. How tragic. For how much longer are you merely going to ape Americans? Get a Job!

    What's the problem Viva? All you seem to be doing is aping a washed up Harvard professor who is fond of plagiarism.

  • Addamo

    Viva is our resident David Horowitz, for whom Israel can do no wrong and whom believes that the reason the Palestinians are treated like dirt is because hey deserve it.

  • BenZ

    Sorry, was it something *I* said? Or have I missed something.

  • viva peace

    Addamo

    I am not aware of any Harvard Profs who would really give a damn about Australians with an identity crisis. Unless you mean the undergrads who clearly wrote Stephen Walt's paper. 😉

  • Addamo

    Unless you mean the undergrads who clearly wrote Stephen Walt’s paper

    You mean the one that is so insignificant it sent the entire Zionist machine into a tail spin?

    And who is it that is having an identity crisis? Are you coming clean about your fascist leanings that all Jews must surrender any individual through processes and adhere to unconditional support for Israel?

    As for those encumbered with an identity crisis, are you are not an Israeli firster who calls himself an Australian?

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  • suze

    BenZ meet Viva. He is not sympathetic to the contents of AL's blog – to put it mildly.

  • viva peace

    Addamo

    The Pals are treated a lot better than they would be if most other nations had to put up with them. Australians would have demanded flattening them decades ago.

  • Addamo

    Viva,

    The Pals are treated a lot better than they would be if most other nations had to put up with them.

    Really? Look at other people who had their lands stolen and while it is true that they were treated badly to begin with, those countries aknowledged thir wrogndoing and tried to make reperatinos i.e. North American Indians.

    Israel have behaved like barbarians.

  • BenZ

    Thanks for the 'introduction' Suze.

    His does seem to be a lone voice here. I can't see much other criticism here, so clearly the idea's a winner.

  • shaukat dhedhi

    since the Palestinians are semitic AND of jewish decendence (who changed their faith), would it be fair to say that those who hate Palestinians are also anti-Semites?

    viva, palestinians are arab jews. they are not european immigrants. the roots go back all the way to isaac. they are more genetically jewish than your whole family will ever be(who are jewish by mere faith and not race). even without dna evidence, one cannot tell the difference between ETHNIC jews and paelstinians. and it's not only the palestinians but arabs of ethnic jews (children of israel) include lebanese, syrians and jordanians.

    you can now understand why both sides are so damn stubborn. it's not an issue of cousins fighting (isaac vs ishmail) but pure sibling rivalry.

    hell will freeze over (and probably israel will revert to palestine) before Palestinians (arab jews) will be defeated.

  • Sammy

    At last, the voice of reason!! As a Muslim I sympathise with the Palestinians and when I meet my Jewish friends I see that they too need a place to call home. There has to be a middle path…..surely both sides can see this. Do both sides want their children to grow up hating the other so much that killing becomes second nature?? Thank you to all those reasonable and sane minded people who have finally spoken up for what is right.

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  • adriana

    ANTONY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    אני בשוק

    אנשים כמוך עשויים להביא שואה נוספת על עמנו חס ושלום

    מדוע אינך לוקח את משפחתך להנות מעשרות הטילים הנופלים מידי יום? ורק אז כשתבין מה משמעות נפגע חרדה לא תגיד שיורד גשם

    אני חיה כאן כמוך אך אנני מעיזה לפצות את פי, אין לי זכות.

    את הכביסה המלוכלכת תכבס בביתך!!!