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.

A positive beginning, but…

The Muslim world takes a step in the right direction towards Palestine:

The worst condition in  the Gaza Strip amidst the ongoing  ceasefire  declared by Israel after the issuance of the UN resolution,  has prompted Indonesia to initiate  a fund raising activity ‘donation’  for Palestine.

The House of Representatives(DPR)  along with its Iranian and Syrian counterparts will start collecting donations  from other members of the Asian Parliamentary Assembly (APA) with a view to mitigating the ordeals and  sufferings of the Palestinian people in the wake of the Israeli military aggression.

What needs to happen now is a far more aggressive lobbying campaign for the Palestinians before Israel launches its next war against them.

3 comments ↪
  • db

    Meanwhile,
    http://ipsnews.net/news.asp?idnews=45489
    Generations of families are vanished, and entire villages now destroyed. Many of the dead are still buried beneath the rubble, their neighbours and relatives left with no way to retrieve them.

    In one of the most harrowing incidents, 35 members of the Samouni family were killed in Zeitoun by an F-16. The surviving members dug the bodies out on Sunday, the first day of the ceasefire.

    At least 5,000 houses have been destroyed and 20,000 buildings damaged throughout the strip, according to local officials. The Gaza Strip is just 40 kilometres long and 10 kilometres wide.

    Twenty mosques and sixteen ministry offices were destroyed, with at least 200 million dollars worth of damage to local infrastructure. The face of the Al-Quds Hospital is scorched from tank fire, and Gaza City is still without power.

    On Tuesday, in the northern Gaza City neighbourhood of Al-Attatra, almost entirely demolished and laced with tank treads, the body of a 94-year-old woman was pulled from the wreckage by her son. The Israeli army shot and killed her, he says, before they brought the house down, again with an F-16.

    “What did she have to do with rockets being fired into Israel?” he asked. The family had been looking for her for days.

    Such stories are commonplace in Gaza since Israel unleashed its deadly war on the territory Dec. 27.

    More than 1,300 Palestinians have been killed in the past three weeks, a third of them children, according to both Gaza health officials and the United Nations. Some 5,500 people have been injured.

    According to the civil defence force in Gaza, which has been tasked with helping pull bodies from the debris, there are still up to 200 persons missing in the northern areas of Gaza. They are presumed dead.

    “This is the worst violence we have seen since the nakba,” says 75-year-old Ibrahim Mohamed Hindi of Zeitoun, using the Arabic word for ‘catastrophe’ to refer to the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians and the creation of Israel in 1948.

    What is also alarming is the apparent vicious nature of the destruction, locals are saying.

    Khamis Mohamed Al-Atar and several other members of his family were forcibly removed from their home in Al-Attatra and taken to a prison in the Negev for 15 days while IDF soldiers occupied the house, which sits on a hill overlooking Gaza City, the strip’s major population centre.

    “One soldier brought me outside and another came out and asked the first one where the rest of my family was,” Mohamed Al-Atar said. “Then he suggested to the soldier that they bring us all outside, line us up against the wall and shoot us. He said they didn’t care which houses had people in them. I thought they were going to kill us all.”

    When Mohamed Al-Atar returned, he found the body of his son left rotting among the family’s now decimated orange groves. He had been shot.

    The inside of their house was smeared with graffiti in Hebrew. The Star of David, an icon of both the Jewish faith and the Israeli state, was spray-painted on the hallways. The toilets had been blasted with grenades, and the floor was blanketed with Israeli food wrappers and bullet shells.

    In a farming area near Beit Hanoun cows lie dead across an entire field, some ripped open by shrapnel and others simply crushed by tanks. The corpses of donkeys, horses, goats and chickens line the streets.

    “This is my family’s livelihood,” said Youssef, 18, of his farm’s slaughtered animals. “And now it’s gone. Who would take the time to kill cows in this war?”

    In the same area, residents found a type of weapon that sends a throng of nails as far as the size of a football field in each direction, according to an Amnesty International representative investigating its use in Gaza.

    A resident, father of an ambulance driver killed by a drone missile Jan. 5, pointed to nails lodged in the side of his house. He said IDF forces used the weapon on them during his son’s funeral procession.

    “I don’t have any feelings any more,” said Mohamed Hindi. “The Israelis have managed to destroy everything. Even our emotions.”

  • db
  • iResistDe4iAm

    The next major war is likely to be against Lebanon, to avenge the 2006 Israeli defeat.

    I hope Lebanon is buying state-of-the-art anti-aircraft missiles, anti-ship missiles and mines, and anti-tank missiles. Defensive weapons all of them.