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.

Getting ready for the final push?

Leading dissident Israeli journalist Shraga Elam opines on the real agenda behind Israel’s madness:

Reading Jeff Halper’s analysis I don’t know if I should cry or laugh.

He writes: “Let’s be crystal clear. Israel’s massive attacks on Gaza today have one overarching goal: conflict management.”

I presume that the Israeli government is not consulting Halper and that he does not have some secret sources. For me it is crystal clear that since the outbreak of the second Intifada in September 2000 the Israeli leadership has being trying to complete the ethnic cleansing of 1948. Of course nobody can call ethnic cleansing just “conflict management”.

The US opposition to this Israeli goal has been able only to slow down the cleansing but not to stop it. Israel just made from time to time some symbolic concessions under US pressure but not more.

This analysis is almost the only one that can explain the behavior of the Israeli leadership and there is enough material to support it.

The plan to “clean” Gaza is old, but only now it seems to be very close. I myself pointed at it again and again and predicted that it will be implemented along the same strategy demonstrated by the Israeli army in Southern Lebanon, i.e. an extensive bombardment that will lead to the flight of hundred thousands of civilians to Egypt and afterwards it would be much easier to cope with the Palestinian fighters. Some Israeli former generals propagated this strategy openly as papers of a respected Israeli military institute of the Tel Aviv University.  A farther proof, among many others, is the recent publication in Ha’aretz that the Israeli government asked for expertise on the international legal situation of bombing of civil areas. As published in this daily, it can be understand that there are some “legal” ways to commit these war crimes, including the “evacuation” of civilians from their homes.

As a kind of Christmas and parting present president Bush obviously authorized a limited operation that should concentrate on combatants after Israel brought on November 4th. (US election day) the fragile ceasefire to fall through an obvious provocation, that the Hamas leadership was foolish enough not to overlook or to look for non-violent means to answer it.

The Israeli leadership obviously hopes now that there will be Palestinian reactions that will enable harsher steps, meaning more extensive bombardments which will lead to the flight of most of the Palestinians.  In this way Israel will avoid the problems of the “day after” the war. Israel has no desire to control directly Palestinians and there is no acceptable alternative of other reliable force capable or wishing to oppress the Gazans.

In the geographical conditions in Gaza this Israeli strategy has better chances than in Lebanon. But still it is not clear how Hizballah, Syria and Iran will react to the blood bath in Gaza. They have the capability to fire missiles all over Israel. Another possible fall out is upheavals in various Arab countries.

It remains to hope that on the one side the Palestinian militants in Gaza will refrain from firing rockets at Israeli settlements and will develop at this late hour a non-violent strategy.  On the other side it is necessary to appeal directly unto Israeli soldiers to do what is in their might to stop and prevent war crimes.

Today, as the Israeli army relies to a wide extent on computer technology and therefore even a single soldier at the right place can stop the war crimes. Never have possessed so few people, like computer experts, so much power.  The Israeli military law says clearly that everybody has to prevent war crimes and prevent the implementation of orders over which a so called black flag is flying.

The support, publication and propagation of the appeal unto Israeli soldiers to do their duty published in a German website might have a deterring effect on the Israeli leadership even if not a single soldier will follow it. The broader support for the appeal will build a further pressure on the Israeli government to look at last for a just political settlement.

The Israeli soldiers will not just fulfill their moral duty but will help to prevent a catastrophe (Shoa) from happening to all the residents of the Middle East including the Israeli Jews.

Shraga Elam
Zurich/Switzerland

It’s a view partly echoed by The Israel Lobby co-author Stephen Walt.

2 comments ↪
  • I just said the exact same thing on my blog.

    In fact, Hassan Nasrallah stated after the Second Lebanon War something similar … that Israel intended to drive the Shia from South Lebanon, which I have reiterated in my recent blog post.

    The Arabs may be oppressed, but they're not blind. While in Western society it is a taboo to question Israel's true motives, in Arab society the rants of Zionism are the first thoughts that spring to mind.

  • ej

    The West Bank and East Jerusalem (not to mention the Golan) seem to have slipped from view.

    Are they are q separate country, now running on conventional constitutional principles?

    Israel's demonisataion of Hamas as THE problem seems to have been accepted across the board by commentators.