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 Neocon’s response: blame it all on Iran

From the vineyard:

Looks like the Israelis do not want to release Barghouti, or at least so says Avi Dichter, the Israeli “Security Minister”:

“Barghouti is certainly a prominent figure in Fatah and in the West Bank, and maybe also in general Palestinian society. But this man built his status on our backs and with our blood”.

Besides the usual bizarre “blood thing” which seems to affect so many Israelis, the man has got a good point: Barghouti certainly has a long track of fighting Israel. Moreover, Dichter added that Barghouti could not be released “as part of an experiment where we will say ‘maybe it will help and maybe it won’t”. Again – I can only agree with him: it is unclear whose bidding Barghouti would do if freed. At least Abbas is a puppet in the Karzai/Siniora mold, whereas Barghouti could prove a far more independent figure. And that is precisely why the Israelis should release him: because he has credibility, because he is popular, because he has the stature to negotiate with all the parties involved.

The fact that Dichter finds this as a reason not to release him simply shows that the Israelis are not interested in serious negotiations.

So what’s next?

As Tony Karon explained it so well on his blog, the “Abbastan plan” is based on a fundamental series of fallacies and has no chance of succeeding. The Israelis probably understand that. In fact, some are already preparing for phase two which is to blame its failure one somebody else: Iran and Syria (under this scenario, Syria is really an Iranian pawn in the hands of Iran). Here is how this logic works:

Everything in the Middle East is connected. (…) With the Hamas takeover of Gaza, we have growing evidence that fundamentalist Muslim groups in the territory are funded by Syria and Iran. We do the best we can to maintain legitimate authorities in the Middle East, but the radical Islamic movement, backed by Syrian compliance and Iranian funding, will stop at nothing to achieve its goals. It is important, when focusing specifically on one particular country or situation, to remember how increasingly connected the region is becoming and to keep in mind the powers supporting the destabilization agenda. (…) The US, Israel and Europe will continue to support the Lebanese government’s authority, because it has no other option. If they were to stop, Lebanon would easily become another Gaza. (…)

Typical Neocon kind of logic: since Hamas took over Gaza, Iran and Syria simply must be involved. Anyone the Empire supports is “maintain legitimate authorities”, what the other side does is “stopping at nothing to achieve its goals”. Should any country or region slip away from Imperial control, Syria and, even more so, Iran should be held responsible. If the Imperial High Commands lets go of Lebanon it will become another Gaza (which makes sense as in both cases the “wrong” party has been democratically elected, in the former Hezbollah, in the latter Hamas).

“Blame it all on Iran” is clearly at the core of this strategy. Hence Netanyahu’s trip to the USA to talk to US Presidential candidates to get US support on an even more hysterically anti-Iranian policy.

Continue to read here:

  • adrian

    even egypt is weighing in and blaming Iran

  • viva peace

    As I have said all along, in this intra-Muhammadan imperialist war, we should back the Persian Shia over the Sunni Arabs.