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.

No crisis means there is a crisis

Clearly disgraced Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert likes his country’s handywork:

Gaza is not undergoing a humanitarian crisis. We’re constantly supplying it with food and medications, and there’s no need for a humanitarian cease-fire.

No crisis? Murdering civilians must make Zionists the world over so proud.

13 comments ↪
  • CF

    Antony,

    In regards to the thousands of Qassam rockets fired at Israeli civilians, I wanted to show you the effect they have on Israeli civilians' daily life.

    1.) Especially here targetting an Israeli school:

    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=MRz3nHwgjHY
    (the loud speaker shouts "Colour Red")

    2.) As for those who say these home made Qassams are feeble, here's what an impact looks like:

    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=f031s79COpw&fea

    3.) And the terrible result:

    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=AJfE0MtQeGI

    These rockets are far from harmless.

  • Anon

    Why don't you also show the effects Israeli Missiles have…Then take a GOOD LOOK at the different pictures.

    When you have a balanced approach/perspective then please pass ur comments on

    1. The effects of missiles Vs Rockets

    – Israeli Schools/ Palestinian Homes/schools/hospitals

    2. Number of Causlaties a Qassam Rocket has compared to an Israeli Missile.

    Then we can actually start a truthful converstion on how harmful the attacks of Israelis on innocent Civilians really are.

  • CF,

    Cause and consequence. Why is it that for Zionists history only began 6 months ago?

    I am going to lead you through a serious of question that will reveal to you the answer you're searching for.

    Why are rockets hitting southern Israel?

    Why are Qassem rockets being made in Gaza labs?

    Why is Hamas even in power?

    Why does Hamas even exist?

    Why does the Gaza Strip exist?

    Why are there 1.5 million refugees crammed on a tiny beach front?

    Why don't these refugees have access to food, water, electricity, fuel?

    Where did the 1.5 million refugees come from?

    The answer to all of the above … the ISRAELI OCCUPATION!

    What is happening today is not a result of 6 months of politics, but 60 years of brutal Israeli occupation, ethnic cleansing and war.

  • Ekk

    Today we do no more believe, that retaliation for a few stone-tipped arrows loosed by Red Indians against the invading White Men, explains the annihilation of indigenous tribes of people in America.
    Nor do we any more believe the myths about native Americans (dis}placed into reservation for their own protection.
    As well, we well know that the treaties were [and still are] being broken by the governments of the invading/occupying European settlers.
    Ekk

    P.S. Few Arabs are fooled by the propaganda blitz of the Israeli lobby.

  • CF

    Hi Antoun,

    Let me address your questions:

    1.) "Why are rockets hitting southern Israel? "

    Because Hamas is following exactly its murderous, fascist Charter:

    http://avalon.law.yale.edu/20th_century/hamas.asp

    – It’s Charter states that "Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it"

    – It’s opposition to the peace process is clear:

    "Initiatives, and so-called peaceful solutions and international conferences, are in contradiction to the principles of the Islamic Resistance Movement"

    – It’s driving force is ugly racism:

    "Our struggle against the Jews is very great and very serious ….. "The Day of Judgement will not come about until Moslems fight the Jews (killing the Jews), when the Jew will hide behind stones and trees. The stones and trees will say O Moslems, O Abdulla, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him"

    Unlike its misguided supporters in the West, the Hamas movement is far more honest about its intentions. It follows its charter precisely. It means what is says, and says what it means.

    You see, I’ve lived in the region, and am aware of how intolerance for the 'other' accounts for the vicious racial hatred of Jews:

    a.) Even their kids parrot this on Palestinian TV:

    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=qSwpAX1xvrc&fea

    b.) Have a look at this. It’s truly bloodthirsty stuff. Seriously, you have no idea:

    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=Xe5L5of2rPM&fea

    c.) At least some Palestinian children know who to blame:

    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=uoi0TGyx_uA&fea

    2.) "Why are Qassem rockets being made in Gaza labs?"

    Because their desecration of their own universities by using them to build bombs probably wasn't enough room.

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=J

    3.) "Why is Hamas even in power?"

    Because Hamas, just like another fascist movement 70 years ago in Europe that came to power democratically, then violently vanquished its opposition. Fatah, also with elected representatives, was expelled brutally.

    4.) "Why does Hamas even exist?"

    Why does radical Islamist extremist exist? Why does Nazism, Fascism, Communism, and Totalitarianism exist? Because we have always seen nihilists seen the dawn of time.

    4.) "Why does the Gaza Strip exist?"

    Excellent question. During the period 1948 to 1967, when Gaza was under Arab control (as was the West Bank), there was no Palestinian state created. Why not? And where was the uproar then? Why didn’t the Arabs give the Palestinians a state? They had 20 years.

    5.) "Why are there 1.5 million refugees crammed on a tiny beach front?"

    See above. They were deprived a state when under Arab control. Then they sought a state IN PLACE OF Israel, instead of ALONGSIDE Israel.

    6.) "Why don’t these refugees have access to food, water, electricity, fuel?"

    Another excellent question. The EU seems to blame Hamas:

    "Hamas and other militant groups in Gaza have their share in aggravating the humanitarian situation, including through carrying out the attacks on the Nahal Oz and Kerem Shalom crossings," the statement read. "The [EU] president condemns such actions, which only lead to further suffering of the population."

    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=120887

    Ya don’t say. Bombing your own fuel crossing points will do that.

    7.) P.S. The Gaza occupation ended in 2005.

    You'll have to find another line to SHOUT OUT.

    Note: Hamas' actions have probably ensured that Israel will never again grant another unilateral withdrawal. How stupid of Hamas. They had the chance, after coming to power, to begin to work alongside Israel, to begin building their own economy, and to seek to live in co-existance. Instead, from the first day after Gaza was evacuated, they launched rockets.

    They took the the former Israeli greenhouses that could have been used to help build state revenue, and destroyed them instead. They hate the Jews more than they love themselves. And the Palestinan people suffer the consequences.

  • Don Wigan

    "They had the chance, after coming to power, to begin to work alongside Israel, to begin building their own economy, and to seek to live in co-existance."

    You can't seriously believe that, CF. Israeli-US refusal to recognize the electoral results plus economic sanctions hardly amount to gestures of co-existance and a willingness to work with Palestinian representatives.

  • ej

    CF

    you have a facility with Hasbara outlets but little facility with the truth or understanding. Tribalism has neutered your brain cells.

    The Gaza occupation did not end in 2005. Jewish settlers were relocated but the Gaza occupation was actually enhanced, which was the whole point of the exercise.

    As a juicy byproduct, Israel stole hefty excise duties due to Palestine, a nice little earner on the side. A bit like the German appropriation of Jewish property as its owners are conveniently disposed of.

    Hamas had on more than one occasion offered to negotiate on the basis of the 1967 borders. Ignored by Israel. The road map scuttled by Israel, as was the more recent Arab League proposals. Palestinians and the Arab world have, in short, no partners for peace.

    IN any case, who Palestinians choose to lead them is none of Israel's business. That Israeli functionaries should refer to their quisling Abbas and his degenerate organisation as 'legitimate' is risible.

    So CF, do us a favour and fuck off. If you must engorge yourself in bloodlust can you keep it in your own circles where it is better appreciated?

  • History tells us a good story regarding the relationship between Muslims and Jews, but at least no one can say Muslims or Palestinians started it:

    The history between Muslims and Jews has always been a good one, no side until this unfortunate situation had ever been out to kill each other off the face of the planet. History reminds us the Muslims and Jews lived side by side in all eras including the Ottoman Dynasty.

    Going back into history, 70 C.E the Roman army after invading Jerusalem murdered and expelled Jews from Judea and Samaria, majority of Jews then fled and reached Spain where they were successful until the 15th century, when the Jews in Spain faced strong pressures to accept Christianity over Judaism. Resisting this oppression the Spanish Kind (Ferdinand) expelled the Jews in their masses from Spain. The Ottoman Empire under the administration of Sultan Beyazit II issued a decree to welcome the Jews. These Jews settled mostly in European parts of the Empire (occasionally known as Sephardic Jews). The Ottoman sultans welcomed the Jews and offered them a safe haven from persecution in the European countries. Until World War I the Land of Israel also known as Palestine, remained under the rule of the Ottoman Empire. During this period the Jewish population in this region lived as loyal subjects of the greater Ottoman Empire. After World War I, the British Empire gained control of Transjordan and Palestine which ended in 1948 with the declaration of independence of the State of Israel. In other words Europe didn’t want the Jews and hence Britain ended up driving all Jews to their new declare state, which was in rejection by all Muslims states by then.

    The Palestinian population accepted the Jews and were sympathetic towards them considering the massacre of their race by the Christians in Germany (Hitler).

    The situation now in Palestine is that since 1948 the Jewish nation under the state name of Israel have continued oppression and executed a plan to expel all Muslims living in Palestine. So this issue relating to religion is only one sided from Israel as Muslims have proved in history that they have the ability to live along side other religions and exercise tolerance.
    A group of Jews living outside the state wrote a letter recently (link provided below) which condemned the established state and refused to recognise and celebrate the 60th anniversary. In this letter, the group confirm the following:

    —-
    “…In May, Jewish organisations will be celebrating the 60th anniversary of the founding of the state of Israel. This is understandable in the context of centuries of persecution culminating in the Holocaust. Nevertheless, we are Jews who will not be celebrating. Surely it is now time to acknowledge the narrative of the other, the price paid by another people for European anti-semitism and Hitler’s genocidal policies. As Edward Said emphasised, what the Holocaust is to the Jews, the Naqba is to the Palestinians.
    In April 1948, the same month as the infamous massacre at Deir Yassin and the mortar attack on Palestinian civilians in Haifa’s market square, Plan Dalet was put into operation. This authorised the destruction of Palestinian villages and the expulsion of the indigenous population outside the borders of the state. We will not be celebrating.

    In July 1948, 70,000 Palestinians were driven from their homes in Lydda and Ramleh in the heat of the summer with no food or water. Hundreds died. It was known as the Death March. We will not be celebrating.

    In all, 750,000 Palestinians became refugees. Some 400 villages were wiped off the map. That did not end the ethnic cleansing. Thousands of Palestinians (Israeli citizens) were expelled from the Galilee in 1956. Many thousands more when Israel occupied the West Bank and Gaza. Under international law and sanctioned by UN resolution 194, refugees from war have a right to return or compensation. Israel has never accepted that right. We will not be celebrating.”
    —-

    So you see my friend, this problem has not just started by Hamas launching firework type missiles into Israel, but rather a problem which was created by the Europeans and endorsed now by the Jews in total annihilation of Muslims living in Palestine. Unfortunately the Jewish state has roots embedded deeply in USA, and the USA do not have the courage to challenge the actions of the Jewish state but its only purpose is unlimited financial and military support.
    To add support for the above, spare a few minutes and check out the youtube video which is a documentary explaining and showing evidence as how Jews lived under the Ottoman Muslim rule:

    Ottoman Empire video part 2 (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=NREKSPVOLkE&feature=related)

    It might be worth watching part 1 before part 2, but this gives you a total clear picture of how Muslims treated Jews and yet this is how they get repaid.

    Reference to the letter by Jewish group condemning the Israel state: http://infidelkafirwatch.wordpress.com/2008/12/27

  • CF

    ej,

    In answer to your vulgar little question, "NO".

    – Hamas' "offer" for 1967 borders was contingent upon a 30 year "ceasefire", not a permanent cessation of hostilities. Do you think Israel is dumb enough to grant a state to an entity that will use this time to build its strength with a view to a more destructive war later? This may fulfill your genocidal thirst for genocide, but Israel ain't gonna allow it. Moron.

    – Israel didn't recognise Hamas when it came to power because it refused to recognise Israel's existence and launched daily rockets at it. One suspects if they'd taken the reins of power and come to government seeking co-existence, there could have been an agreement.

    – That Palestinians also elected Abbas and Fatah, yet that this can be so easily dismissed, betrays your real attitude towards Palestinian democracy. You're too infested with Israel-hatred to love Palestinian democracy.

    – "IN any case, who Palestinians choose to lead them is none of Israel’s business"

    Sure it is. Come to power and wave your charter proceeding to declare war on me, and guess what …. I'm gonna take a great interest in who you are.

    And then I'm gonna hit you right back.

  • ej

    Even apart from the criminal complicity of the pro-Israel lobby in Israel criminality, the pathology of the cheer squad deserves speedy scholarly investigation in its own right.

    One can understand the high functionaries of AIPAC, etc., basking in the petty emoluments obtained from serving an opportunist unprincipled regime – the petty rewards of all apparatchiks. But lowly spear-carriers like CF, what? in day to day life, normal generally principled human beings, but when it comes to Israel, shit for brains, leeping like lemmings from the cliffs of integrity and morality into the swamp of self-abnegation. And for what? a suppurating sore, conceived, born and sustained on ethnic cleansing. As the disgusted Israeili expatriate Oren Ben-Dor, has noted on the current diabolical destruction: "Echoing Lebanon 2006, the people of Gaza are being butchered by murderous pilots of a murderous state."

    Recognise Israel? any state with a modicum of strategic self-interest would refrain from acknowledging a state that refuses to define its own boundaries. Recognise which Israel? As for the Palestinians, recognise the institutionalised force of their own oppression, the appropriation of their lands, livelihoods, land? Legitimise this heinous crime forever?

    The Israeli leadership is high on its own supply, not even smart Zionists (hm, an oxymooron?); the cheer leaders have shit for brains. But one can hardly expect a subject people to fall for the same agitprop.

  • CF

    You seem like an extremely angry person, ej.

    May your hatred and burning desire for rage continue to eat you up on the inside.

    While you bubble away, I'll continue to support the most Left-wing state in the Middle-East.

    You, meanwhile, clearly a traitor to liberal values, will one day have to reconcile your quiet cheerleading for the religious Hamas right-wingers with the remnants of your progressive morals which you've so easily jettisoned in support of a ultra-conservative fascists.

  • ej

    CF

    'extremely angry' would be an understatement. Rather apoplectic with rage, despair and disgust.

    Israel as left-wing? And in the midst of this current carnage? I don't think so. This apartheid ethnocracy, cum theocracy, run by a political/military caste of gangsters?

    'fascism' as an appropriate label for Israel's enemies in the Middle East?

    Acquiescence to tribalism über alles has necessarily involved crucifying the English language in the process of denying your complicity in this criminal enterprise.

    Accuse me of betraying liberal values? Hello? The mendacity of it all defies the imagination. You are a pathetic know-nothing shit who appears to wear his acculturated ignorance and prejudice as a badge of honour. Goodbye.

  • CF

    ej,

    – Arab women first gained the right to vote in Israel. Before any ARAB state granted them.

    – You won't find THIS Gay Pride parade anywhere else in the Mid-East:

    http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=Oa0af9xYiCw&fea

    – Israel has an organised union linked with International Labor. It has the most free workers in the region who have the most workers rights in the Mid-East.

    Enjoy your right-wing Hamas fascists.