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 rise and rise of humane Judaism

One of the only positive legacies of the Bush years has been the rise in Jewish voices of dissent in the mainstream. Sure, Diaspora dissent has existed for decades but rarely as loudly and influential as today. Inspirations and friends such as Tony Karon and Phil Weiss in the US, Brit Tony Judt and Independent Jewish Voices in the UK (whose Verso book on these issues, A Time to Speak Out, is released in October, and features a chapter by yours truly.)

All of us come from radically different backgrounds but we share the belief that Judaism should no longer be defined solely through Zionism. Israeli behaviour remains so shocking, brutal and unacceptable (bravely documented by an Israeli human rights group such as B’Tselem) that a growing number of Jews have started to publicly condemn the Jewish state’s criminality and immorality. A group I co-founded last year, Independent Australian Jewish Voices, was part of this process.

And now, in a further sign that our Jewish voices won’t be silenced due to Zionist intimidation or threats, a feature in today’s Australian newspaper that begins to articulate what kind of Jewish writing is possible (away from blind Zionist love or Holocaust porn):

Journalist and author Antony Loewenstein says his book, My Israel Question, and his print and online articles stem from a interest in “re-defining or shifting the definition of what Judaism is. Judaism does not have to be interlinked with Zionism.” His Jewish identity does not define his self or his work, he says: “I see myself as a human being first and a Jew second.”

But his background has led him to question what he perceives as a reluctance to discuss Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians among some in the Jewish community and in the Western media. Loewenstein’s grandparents were assimilated European Jews who migrated to Melbourne in 1939 and lost most of their relatives in the Holocaust. Because of their experiences he understands the strong emotional connection of Holocaust survivors to Israel. Yet “years of listening to Jewish family, friends, (and) community dehumanising Palestinians and Arabs” has fired his interest in human rights.

His work has raised the ire of many in the Australian Jewish community, which became, according to Freadman, almost universally Zionistic after the Holocaust. Though he has received death threats and hate mail, Loewenstein says he has also had support from Jews and non-Jews grateful that he has provided a forum for discussion.

Post-Zionist or anti-Zionist Jews may be in the minority in the Diaspora, but we’re determined to no longer allow hardline Zionists to define who we are as human beings.

  • moshe

    Butt Head farts again! " All of us come from radically different backgrounds but we share the belief that Judaism should no longer be defined solely through Zionism. " Butt Head seeks to "Pimp" his book. Yo Butt Head, what do you know about Torah spirituality?! Your just a reform Jew who ignores the 65% assimilation of galut American and european Jewry! Traditional Rabbinic Judaism has its problems. It rejected Zionism because the Secularism of europe which rejected the Church as both corrupt and abusive, Rabbinic Judaism fear that the Secular Jews would view Torah Judaism in the same light. This tragic error of self confidence has produced a terrible division between secular zionists and traditional Jews. Galut Jews don't know how far secular zionists and traditional Jews have come to realize that we as a people share a common alliance!

    As a traditional Jew I live in Be'er Sheva, we as a people share the joys and sorrows of life together. If my daughter married a secular Israeli I'd dance at the wedding, not so a reform Jew from galut! I happily enter a secular Israelis house, eat bread with them and drink their wine. A galut reform Jew, their bread has the din of goyish bread, their wine, the din of forbidden wine! Reform galut jews do not require a get to get divorced because they have no kedushin when they marry.

  • moshe – In English please?

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