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.

Smog, Rudd and Hu Jia

My following article appears in the Amnesty International Australia’s Uncensor campaign about human rights in China:

The international outcry over China’s human rights abuses was temporarily disrupted this week with news from Beijing that the regime was determined to manage the city’s pollution problems by halting building construction after July for two months. Unfortunately, many of the Games’ venues are not yet finished and it remains to be seen whether they will be completed in time. The exact plans remain a state secret, but at least half of Beijing’s 3.3 million cars will probably be banned during the Games.

The real story, however, remains the growing international calls for action on China’s belligerence. Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd’s recent trip to Beijing highlighted the difficulties of this position. The British press fawned over him. London’s Independent praised him for speaking “unpalatable home truths” about the troubles in China. “The world needs more leaders like this”, they gushed. “We hope he has started as he means to go on.”

The Guardian warned China not to parade the Olympic torch through Tibet, calling it “cultural imperialism”. Murdoch’s Sun tabloid, however, appeared unwilling to upset the Chinese. At least Olympic organisers finally admitted the protests were a “crisis” and Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon, announced he would boycott the opening ceremonies.

Leading Australian Sinologist Professor Geremie Barme explained that the Chinese people were aware that Rudd had spoken Mandarin at Peking University, “but all mention of Tibet, apart from Tibet being part of China’s sovereign territory, has been expunged from the record.One brave Chinese dissident even challenged the Chinese people to seriously examine the country’s record in Tibet. “I urge the Chinese people to take a long, hard look at themselves”, Jonathan Li said, “and stop being so uptight”.

Rudd was walking a fine line, of course. Amnesty International Australia has called on the Australian government to engage in a “strong and robust dialogue” between Australia and China, especially the promotion of human rights and minority rights. Human Rights Watch’s position is similar.

The expected backlash against protestors is starting to occur – and not just Chinese President Hu Jintao defending his crackdown in Tibet as “a problem of safeguarding national unification”. One leading human rights campaigner, Liu Xiaobo, warns demonstrators that: “If the Games fail, human rights will suffer. The government would stop paying attention to the rest of the world. I personally think: We want the Games and we want human rights to be respected.” One Chinese-American woman, Helen Zia, explained why she wanted to carry the torch in San Francisco, in a show of solidarity towards a “changing” China.

The global outrage over the torch relay has sparked a dormant nationalistic surge in China. “Tibetans have a strong case against Beijing”, wrote Philip Bowring in the International Herald Tribune, “but mixing it in with the Olympics and Darfur is a red rag to a wounded, young bull”. Some Chinese bloggers are calling for a blacklist of French goods after the recent scuffles in Paris. Chinese hackers are targeting pro-Tibetan websites and remain unforgiving of perceived slights against their Olympic moment.

A former Beijing chief for the New York Times explained the majority of Chinese youth have been beneficiaries of massive economic growth and “can’t imagine why Tibetans would turn up their noses at rising incomes and the promise of a more prosperous future. The loss of a homeland just doesn’t compute as a valid concern.” Perhaps the Tibet protests have backfired?.

The most moving news of the week was the words of Zeng Jinyan, the wife of recently imprisoned dissident Hu Jia. “I feel great pain and hopelessness”, she wrote. “But no matter what, I will do my best to protect my family, and do all I can to allow Hu Jia to come back home as soon as possible.”

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