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.

Freedomcake, quick to bake

One of the great contradictions of the pro war position has been that the Iraq war is making us safer, while simultaneously using the escalated terror threat resulting from the Iraq war to justify the continued occupation.  So when the National Intelligence Estimate on al Qaeda reports that Al Qaeda is alive and well (thanks to the Iraq war),  wingnuts try to spin this as proof that the Iraq war was a good idea after all.

As the president’s team sees it, the NIE is evidence that we need to stay in Iraq.

Slate’s Fred Kaplan explains just how wrong the White House is.

The National Intelligence Estimate that was released today—titled “The Terrorist Threat to the Homeland”—amounts to a devastating critique of the Bush administration’s policies on Iraq, Iran, and the terrorist threat itself.

Its main point is that the threat—after having greatly receded over the past five years—is back in full force. Al-Qaida has “protected or regenerated key elements” of its ability to attack the United States. It has a “safe haven” in Pakistan. Its “top leadership” and “operational lieutenants” are intact. It is cooperating more with “regional terrorist groups.”

As a result, the report concludes, “the U.S. Homeland will face a persistent and evolving terrorist threat over the next three years” and is, even now, “in a heightened threat environment.”

More proof that the war is making us less safe.

If that isn’t bad enough, the Bush devotees are also insisting that the Iraq war is a success. I guess it would be if the stated aim was to bring aid and comfort to Al Qaeda, but I don’t remember that being one of them

CNN is discussing the National Intelligence Estimate about Al Qaeda. I assume the shrieking and gibbering I hear from afar emanates from Greater Wingnuttia. It’s worth pointing out though that Al Qaeda appears to be back in the news primarily because it has recently been discovered that Al Qaeda is in Iraq, of all places, and so now provides the latest reason why we must stay there forever. Of course, there would be no Al Qaeda in Iraq if we had not invaded Iraq….

Al Qaeda will try to tap its resources and capabilities in Iraq in its efforts to exact another terrorist attack on U.S. soil, according to a top government intelligence report released Tuesday.

“In addition, we assess that its association with [al Qaeda in Iraq] helps al Qaeda to energize the broader Sunni extremist community, raise resources and to recruit and indoctrinate operatives, including for homeland attacks,” states the declassified summary of the report.

Watching the press conference now. Funny, because the obvious conclusion from this report is that the only people in the whole entire fucking world the Iraq war has so far benefited… is Al Qaeda. And now the administration wants to stay in Iraq, so they need to pump up the Al Qaeda in Iraq thing. But they also don’t want anyone to draw the obvious conclusion that the war was a fuckup.

They also are running into trouble with the usual conundrum they face in bringing up Al Qaeda at all — here is this Threat that we told you we would Vanquish six years ago! And we did Vanquish them! But they are still a Dire Threat! Why, worse then ever! But we were not lying in saying we Vanquished them!

Shorter Bush administration:

IF YOU PUT TWO AND TWO TOGETHER AND GET FOUR, THE TERRORISTS WIN!

So you see, so long as we agree that two and two does not come to four, the GWOT is being won.

Spare a thought for the ministry of truth.  Spinning a war is such a delicate operation. One has to maintain the fine balance between:

– presenting the enemy as an ongoing threat, while maintaining that you are defeating them;

– constantly defending the war, while convincing the public that you hate war and that war was the last resort and,

– reminding the public that they should be fearful, while trying to convince them they are safer than they were before the war

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