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.

What, you missed the peaceful attempt to just stage a play?

An interesting letter in today’s Melbourne Age about Monday’s staging of Seven Jewish Children:

The saga over the play Seven Jewish Children again highlights the poor quality of debate on issues of anti-Semitism and the Middle East. After several days of intensive media scrutiny, and the usual acrimony between pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian groups, I am still unclear about the content of the play and the reason it is criticised.

In part, this may represent a failure of the detractors to adequately make their case. I understand that anti-Semitism can manifest in subtle and insidious forms that must be confronted and condemned.

However, groups such as the Australian Union of Jewish Students do themselves and the Jewish community a disservice by failing to properly unpack the issues. It is clear that activists on both sides are happy to revert to dumb symbolic acts of partisanship, waving Israeli flags and Palestinian headscarves in each other’s faces, rather than putting their case to the public.

In this intellectual vacuum, everyone gets to huff and puff, media proprietors make a killing, and no one learns a thing.

Eli Court, Richmond

  • People like this who claim to be Pro-Palestinian who had a go at the supporters who chanted down the Zionists really piss me off.

    Do they think we were meant to just let them be there without any opposition? What would this guy say if these Zionists just broke into the theatre without any opposition and disrupted the performance.

    The people waving Palestinian scarves and chanting at them often do put their position to the public. There is constantly public meetings, rallies run by groups such as Australians for Palestine and Students for Palestine – which he would've known about if he was actually serious about the issues himself.

    But you don't win arguments with Zionists. You can't argue when they deny history, lie and support the bombing of Palestinian children.

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  • Jewish student

    As one of the Jewish students at the protest outside the state library, I am frustrated by the false recollection of event.

    So here are the facts:

    -We were not there to 'derail' the play, nor to 'storm' the theatre, that is absolutely preposterous! We were strictly warned, by organizers, to act civilly and lawfully.

    -Our intentions were only to show opposition to the content of the play and engage in discussion outside the theater as to why we believe that the content is incorrect and breaches the boundary between legitimate criticism and racism. We did not even prepare chants, and instead prepared informative flyers which were given out to people waiting in line who were invited to ask questions and engage in discussion.

    -After some constructive discussion in the first 15 minutes of our presence, a group of Socialist Alliance members broke out into a hateful chant, and were quickly joined by many others.

    -Once the angry crowed became energized, civil discussion was no longer possible and we responded by chanting “we want peace” “no more terrorism” and singing and an Israel peace song ‘Shalom Salaam’ which translates into ‘peace' in Hebrew, and in Arabic.

    -Our members, consisting mainly young 18 and 19 year old students, were surprised by the reaction. I witnessed grown men yelling in the faces of our young female students who came to the rally anticipating calm and peaceful discussion and were left in notable distress. Police had to step in to push the angry crowd away from our group.

    Therefore, it is wrong to accuse us of attempting to silence debate. We arrived with the intention to create debate, which was silenced by the mob of angry anti Israel protestors.