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.

All Palestinians are terrorists

At least that’s according to remembers of the Sydney Jewish community. Marrickville Council has moved to establish a sister city agreement with the Palestinian city of Bethlehem , and this has some members livid.

NSW Jewish Board of Deputies chief executive Vic Alhadeff said Bethlehem Council was controlled by members of the terrorist organisations Hamas and Islamic Jihad, which support the killing of Jews.

The Palestinians elected Hamas to government last year, so that means that Bethlehem, like all Palestinian towns, are controlled by terrorists. And think of all that money that will flow from Marrickville residents to Hamas.

And of course, any visiting delegation will have only one thing on their mind when they arrive. To rally the residents of Marrickville to support the destruction of Israel.

“This means an international guest could address a public meeting hosted by this council and call for the destruction of Israel and death to the Jews.”

Before you know it, there will be town hall meetings denying the Holocaust. As for those Israeli tanks, fighter jets and helicopters, they are are the weapons of liberators, not terrorists.

25 comments ↪
  • viva peace

    There is no way in hell I would want a "Palestinian" living anywhere near my or my family or friends.

  • Andre

    There is no way in hell I would want a “Palestinian” living anywhere near my or my family or friends.

    I'm sure that sounds a lot better spoken in German.

  • Maybe they could be made to wear some kind of identifying mark, viva, so you could cross the road rather than walk too near one of them?

  • Roslyn Ross

    The truly worrying thing is that people take this seriously. Hamas is the democratically elected Government of Palestine. It was elected mainly because Fatah was so corrupt and is now a US/Israeli stooge and because Hamas actually did something to improve the quality of people's lives. Now, Israel and the US choose to call Hamas a terrorist organisation because, surprisingly, Hamas is not prepared to give carte blanche acceptance to Israel as it now stands…. as in, on most of Palestine. Hamas also states that as an Occupied people they have a right to fight for freedom. Surprisingly, people seem to think this is strange. It seems that others may fight for their freedom if they live under Occupation but not Palestinians!

    Israel was founded on terrorism and its first leaders were in essence, terrorists, but the world at large 'talked' to Israel. Not so it seems to Palestinians who in fact have a more just cause for their violence than the Jews did in their bid to colonise Palestine.

    One could also argue that the US is a terrorist because of its illegal and immoral invasion and occupation of Iraq, and so too is Australia by extension….. and yet people see fit to target the Palestinians, ignoring of course, the terrorism Israel uses on a daily basis to maintain its occupation and continue its colonisation.

    Hypocrisy rules!

  • BenZ

    Andre and Antony should thank their lucky stars that Marrickville Council has given them something to brood over. This way, they can still attack the Jews, without drawing unneccessary attention to the savage carnage in the Palestinian territories that they are hoping people won't hear about.

    Wouldn't want anyone to find out the Palestinians are bloodthirsty and rioting in the streets, eh boys?

  • BenZ

    A rather telling letter appears in today's Australian. http://blogs.theaustralian.news.com.au/letters/in

    THE current civil war in the Palestinian territories is tragic, benefits nobody and is potentially despairing for those of us who still hope one day to see a peaceful two-state solution that will empower both the Israeli and Palestinian peoples.

    It is also instructive that those local anti-Zionist fundamentalists who seek to impose a Greater Palestine on the Israeli people have suddenly gone silent. They deserve to be asked the following question: If the Palestinian factions can commit such atrocities against their own brothers, what on earth would they do if they ever got the chance to dominate the Israelis?
    Philip Mendes

    Antony will of course have nothing to say.

    Daniel Lewis of Rushcutters Bay also had his letter published, which is rather impressive considering he has never, ever had any comment to this blog approved, thanks to Antony's hypocritcal censorship. Specifically, he has a higher level of publication in The Australian than on a teeny blog.

    I'd repost Lewis' letter here, but I'd hate to be censored by association…

  • Roslyn Ross

    Benz,

    What rot! All this waffle about atrocities being committed by Palestinians when Israel has been committing atrocities for decades. What a joke to talk about Palestinian atrocities when Israel daily, murders and maims as it works to continue its occupation and its colonisation.

    So if the Palestinians are so bloodthirsty, how do you define Israel's atrocities against not just Palestinians but the Lebanese as well.

    Here is the real truth:

    a. The Palestinians are an occupied people subject to brutalisation and continued colonisation therefore any ability to establish a truly functional society is limited by its Occupier – Israel.

    b. The current violence has been aided and abetted by Israel and the US and is exactly what they want. Israel first supported and armed Hamas to thwart and destroy Fatah, then, when Hamas actually began to help the people of Palestine and to function effectively and was elected democratically as Government, Israel and the US began to arm and support Fatah in order to thwart and destroy Hamas. This 'civil war' has come about because Israel and the US have been stoking the fires and because Mahmoud Abbas is an Israeli/US stooge and Fatah is no longer on the side of the Palestinian people. In essence, Hamas had no choice but to act.

    c. A divided Palestine is exactly what Israel wants since its plan is to maintain the prison of Gaza and to keep all of the West Bank land it has taken so far therefore making it impossible for any Palestinian state to be established.

    It won't work of course. It is just another part of Israel's evil game to control all of Palestine and to work to destroy the Palestinian people.

  • Ah, the cynical retrospective justification…what took so long???

    When policies intended to destroy the Palestinian national movement, it's elected government, and turn Palestinians agianast each other, the cynics sniff, 'see look what they do do each other, who can they possibly govern/be trsuted/etc etc etc…..'.

    It's always trotted out by the supporters of imperial/colonial rule.

    The only surprise is that they think it's so clever to say, when it's as predictable as the sun rise.

    The only real surprise, as has been noted by many experivned observers of the Palestinian situation, is that despite the ongoing effots, Palestinian social fabric had held together so well, for so long.

    But the haters will now be rejoicing at what they see, despite the mealy mouthed lip-service to "the tragedy".

  • That should have read,
    "When policies intended to destroy the Palestinian national movement, its elected government, and turn Palestinians against each other, finally wreak the havoc intended, the cynics sniff – "see look what they do do each other, how can they possibly govern/be trusted/etc etc etc…"

    I think we can expect more plenty of this garbage from those suddenly lamenting the "atrocities" in Gaza, who will turn out to be the same people who peviously supported Israels actions (ie. atrocities) in Gaza. I wouldn't spit on them if they were on fire.

    Chomsky said it well,

    "[the] predictable consequences of massive terror can be exploited by the aggressors as a pretext for [further] terror and economic warfare…..and by elements of the educated classes to offer a retrospective justifcation for the atrocites and crimes they supported: just look at how awful the consequnces where after we withdrew…"

  • BenZ

    Palestinians when Israel has been committing atrocities for decades. What a joke to talk about Palestinian atrocities when Israel daily, murders and maims as it works to continue its occupation and its colonisation.

    Sure sure….

    How does "colonisation" correlate with withdrawal from Gaza?
    How does "daily" murder stand up to more Palestinians killed by Jordan in a single day in September, than by Israel in the last 5 decades?

    Your arguments are great on placards and propaganda sheets, but simply don't stand up to any objective assessment of reality.

    Your diehard ability to absolve the Palestinians for any responsibility for their future, is much of the reason they are in so much shit today.

    Why build an effective society, when it's easier to burn buildings, kill opponents and live in shit, as long as one can always blame someone else.

  • Yes, BenZ is right, Gaza would be a paradise, if only the Palstinians weren't so stupid as to make it a hell. The economic siege is just a trifling inconvenience that any right-thinking person would surmount with the greatest of ease.

    Oh, well, just the usual racist drivel from the usual suspects.

  • Marilyn

    Benz last year alone Israel murdered 660 people in Gaza, injured 1570 more, bulldozed 400 homes, destroyed 14,000 dunum of crops and orchards, bulldozed an 850 year old mosque, flew 550 air raids and daily sonic booms, sent in 15,000 shells and in exchange got a few hundred penny crackers fired at them.

    Jesus weeping will you get a grip on reality.

  • BenZ

    Michael,

    Within hours of the Israel withdrawal from Gaza, the Palestinians set fire to millions of dollars of greenhouses which had been left as a gift. They preferred violence and destruction to propsperity.

    So spare me the sob story about their economic woes.

    In any case, the entire Arab world is an economic disaster with massive illiteracy and a combined GDP of less than single countries in the West. So I fail to see why you honestly believe Gaza, under total Arab control would be any different.

    Face it – the Palestinians simply prefer death and poverty.

    Marilyn, As long as you continue to pull convenient facts out of your arse, you'll have to excuse people writing you off.

  • Andre

    BenZ,

    You are one clueless piece of work.

    Within hours of the Israel withdrawal from Gaza, the Palestinians set fire to millions of dollars of greenhouses which had been left as a gift.

    Ahem. A gift? Just because they didn’t destroy the greenhouses as they left it must mean they were a sign of generosity? The population that moved into Gaza desperately needed that space and those greenhouses were too large and took up too much space for the Palestinians to justify remaining. A lot like giving a Mercedes to a guy who can’t afford the gas.

    What they have not given back and continue to destroy in the agricultural land that was necessary to cultivate crops, They have not allowed the Palestinians who grow those crops to export their crops, because those vehicles are stuck as check points for days while the fruit rots in the sun.

    Before the 1948 ethnic cleansing, Palestine was doing just fine economically. Before the 1967 land grab, the Palestinian population were self sustaining. Today they are not because it is impossible for them.

  • BenZ

    Andre,

    I know you will apologise for anything the Palestinians do, howsoever depraved, so this latest attempt comes as no real surprise.

    Just because they didn’t destroy the greenhouses as they left it must mean they were a sign of generosity?

    Yes.

    It was later revealed that an originally anonymous benefactor was Bill Gates, whose charitable foundation had arranged for the transfer of the high-tech greenhouses to the Palestinians. Note, they were responsible for around US$100 Million per year of exports. Money the Palestinians could have used – but as usual, they chose violence and bloodshed.

    The population that moved into Gaza desperately needed that space and those greenhouses were too large and took up too much space for the Palestinians to justify remaining.

    If what you said was true, they would have bulldozed them. They would not have set them on fire, and cheered as they burned.

    You are stuck on stupid.

  • BenZ

    As we speak, Palestinians are setting fire to plenty of Fatah office buildings.

    I guess they "needed that space" as well, right Andre?

  • Andre

    Money the Palestinians could have used – but as usual, they chose violence and bloodshed.

    You mean these greenhouses?
    http://www.nytimes.com/2005/07/15/international/m

    About half the greenhouses in the Israeli settlements in Gaza have already been dismantled by their owners, who have given up waiting to see if the government was going to come up with extra payment as an inducement to leave them behind, say senior officials working on the coordination of this summer’s Israeli pullout from Gaza.

    Of the roughly 1,000 acres of agricultural land that were under greenhouses in the 21 Israeli settlements in Gaza, only 500 acres remain – creating significant doubts that the greenhouses could be handed over to the Palestinians as “a living business,” the goal cited by the Israeli coordinator of the pullout, Eival Giladi.

    So not only were the greenhouses not donated by Israel, but the settlers were merely holding out for more money before destroying them. Oooooooops. Yeah, big time generosity that.

    1000 acres is hardly insignificant for the one of the most populated places on earth.

    Note, they were responsible for around US$100 Million per year of exports.

    Note that is has already been pointed out that such exporting have been made impossible due to the fact that vehicles carrying such produce are prevented from passing through checkpoints. In fact, Israel said from the beginning that they could not guarantee the produce would be exported. Like I said, a Mercedes given to someone without the money to buy gas.

    If what you said was true, they would have bulldozed them. They would not have set them on fire, and cheered as they burned.

    Bulldozed them with what? Better still, they could have asked the Israelis to take a break from bulldozing the thousands of homes and orchards, and do it for them right?

    As we speak, Palestinians are setting fire to plenty of Fatah office buildings.

    Do you have a link? Either way, Fatah are now widely despised, so it's no surprise.

    You are stuck on stupid

    Here is whee you’re stuck big boy.
    http://www.uruknet.de/pic.php?f=headupass.jpg

  • viva peace

    The worst thing that ever happened to the Palestinians is giving up the advantages of being occupied by the intellectually superior Jews.

    The people I feel sorry are the black-eyed virgins in Paradise who will have to service these revolting hairy-backed pigs!

  • Roslyn Ross

    Viva,

    Your post does not constitute debate but simple-minded bigotry.

    Benz,

    The one fact you fail to deal with is that the Palestinians live under Occupation and a brutal Occupation at that. The Israelis are the Occupiers and use the Occupation to continue colonising.

    Ergo: the Palestinians are the victims and the Israelis the aggressor. Whatever else happens these are the incontrovertible facts. End of story. Until the Occupation ends it is the Israel which is in the wrong because it is Israel which has the power to end the Occupation and both the power and responsibility to act as a benign, not vicious and murderous Occupier, working only to bring the Occupation to an end.

    Whatever dysfunction is expressed by Palestinian society it must be measured against the brutal repression and abuse they suffer at the hands of Israel.

    On the other hand, as a free democracy Israel is completely responsible for its dysfunction and brutality and has no mitigating factor to be taken into account.

  • "The people I feel sorry are the black-eyed virgins in Paradise who will have to service these revolting hairy-backed pigs!" – viva hate

    I's not possible to have a rational debate with raving bigots.

    It's enough to just let them be seen for what they are.

  • Andre

    The people I feel sorry are the black-eyed virgins in Paradise who will have to service these revolting hairy-backed pigs!

    Isn't it amazing that for all the books and research Viva claims to have made on the subject of Israel and the Middle East, this offering is all he has to show for it?

  • BenZ

    The one fact you fail to deal with is that the Palestinians live under Occupation and a brutal Occupation at that. The Israelis are the Occupiers and use the Occupation to continue colonising.

    Bollocks. There is no occupation whatsoever in Gaza, yet there are still Palestinian terrorists acting like savage barbarians. The excuses run pretty thin, especially when you consider that other non-Muslim groups under occupatione e.g. the Tibetans do not blow themselves up in the name of their god.

  • Gaza remains under Israeli control. Israel controls the airspace, the sea and all border crossings, even the one with Egypt. Nothing can go in or out without Israeli permission. This is occupation.

    Lame apologists cry "but we withdrew". But that is what you expect from the pro-Israel Stalinists.

    Today IDF sit in the northern tip of the GS.

  • viva peace

    The one fact you fail to deal with is that the Palestinians live under Occupation and a brutal Occupation at that.

    Exactly. Imagine having to live ANYWHERE Occupied by Islamists, particularly the fetid Palestinians!

    Oh well, they'll end kicking each other soon. THEN what this blog have to whinge about?

    Once again, my sympathies go to the Virgins.

  • Bigots like viva have been seen before. In South Africa the die-hard Apartheid-ists pointed to the conflict between the ANC and Inkatha as the proof of their theories about the unfitness of the blacks to rule.

    viva and BenZ are in appropriate company.