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.

Rupert’s helping hand in apartheid

Following the Australian’s desperate editorial on Saturday damning anybody who challenges Israeli policies, Associate Professor Bassam Dally, from The Australian Friends of Palestine Association, has issued an open to the paper’s editor, Chris Mitchell:

A Friend of Palestine is not an Enemy of Israel

Open Letter to Chris Mitchell
Bassam Dally

The editorial titled “A trip worth taking” on Saturday the 13th of June was written in anger and is full of hate. One wonders how the editor of The Australian newspaper knows about a letter writing campaign to Julia Gillard regarding her trip to Israel? Was it her office who wants some help from The Australian? Was the release of the AFOPA-CJPP Opinion Poll which has enraged the editor? Or was it at the request of the Zionist lobby?

Mr Mitchell, your editorial was meant to defend the trip but soon it became an attack at any one who dares to question the policies and actions of Israel. It is one thing to defend the trip and it is another to savage the citizens of conscience who want the Palestinians and the Israelis to reach a Just and lasting peace.

Those who criticise the trip are the same citizens who helped defeat apartheid South Africa and who kept the pressure on Indonesia to give the East Timorese their freedom. Your flurry of expletives is not justified nor warranted. I’m not sure who you had in mind when you described us as: “fanatics”, “loud lobbies with no interest in compromise”, “Israel’s opponents”, “Israel’s enemies”, “extremists and political amateurs”. Your outburst is a testament that our campaigns and mobilisation is making a difference. I’m sure you have received the media release showing that 28% of Australians support the Palestinian position as compared to 24% who support the Israeli position. Are you accusing 28% of the Australian people of being extremists, Israel enemies and political amateurs, Mr Mitchell?

Your editorial takes the role of journalists and newspapers to a different level. It seems that your role has become a defender of Israel and Zionism. Your outburst is by no means the first. Last year, you attacked a paid ad in your newspaper. Those same fanatics, extremists and political amateurs criticised the Prime Minister and the rest of the politicians who celebrated the 60th anniversary of the establishment of Israel while ignoring the plight of the Palestinians and the 4 million of them who are still refugees. Those signatories included clergy, unionists, federal court judges, academics, barristers and many, many concerned Australians. Malcolm Fraser also wrote an article in The Age supporting our request for acknowledgement of the suffering of the Palestinians. Is he also a political amateur, an extremist and a fanatic?

Mr Mitchell, you wrote that we have no intention to compromise. Well, I don’t compromise when it come to human rights; I don’t compromise when hundreds of children have been killed; I don’t compromise on issues of injustice and I don’t compromise when people are oppressed and humiliated on a daily basis. And nor should you.

Your newspaper has supported the war on Gaza and the killing of more than 1400 people, many innocent civilians. The Deputy Prime Minister failed to condemn the attack and the Foreign Minister can only say that “Australians are horrified by the death toll in Gaza”. Noteworthy, it is not the Government that is horrified, only the Australian people. We know, Mr Mitchell, that 42% of Australians thought that the attack on Gaza was not justified. We also know that Israel is under investigation for war crimes. Testimonies of Israeli soldiers reveal that many Gazans were shot at point blank range, women and children were executed by snipers and we all saw the footage of the UN school being attacked by the banned white phosphorous bombs. The UN is saying that those responsible will not be brought to justice because Israel is refusing to cooperate. Did your newspaper report an “outrage” over this? Do you support war crimes Mr Mitchell? Do you want them to be investigated and did you call on Israel to cooperate? Do you want the perpetrators to be brought to justice? And if not, why not?

I was quite surprised to see that you mixed the issue of the ACTU and the construction workers union with the issue of Israel-Palestine. Although Julia Gillard is the supposed link your intentions are quite clear. You despise us so much to want to mar our reputation with those accused of thuggery and bullying tactics among the unionists. Well, Mr Mitchell, we are lucky to live in Australia where people can see through such smearing tactics. They well know that we stand for human rights, for justice and for peace. We are neither fanatics, nor extremist and you are wrong to paint us as such.

You so passionately promote the two-state solution and assert that Gillard is there to promote this solution. Well, if that is the case how is it that the Australian Government and your newspaper are silent about the settlements and the apartheid wall which are the obstacle to the two-state solution? Why are you silent about Netanyahu’s rejection of the two-state solution? Do you really believe that Julia Gillard is going to press Israel on the settlements, or support the Arab Peace Initiative? Is she going to press Israel to allow humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip or to left the blockade? I put it to you Mr Mitchell that Ms Gillard and her entourage are there to appease those who fund their election campaigns. I’m also sure that you know this as well as I do.

Ms Gillard’s trip is a PR exercise to try and improve Israel’s image among Australians. The Israeli foreign ministry has launched an aggressive campaign the day after its military assault on the Palestinians has stopped with the objective to improve Israel’s image in the eyes of the world. By taking part in this trip we are telling the Israeli government that we support your imprisonment of 4 million Palestinians, killing more than 1400 of their sons and daughters in 22 days, wounding thousands and causing more than $22 billions of damage. I put it to you Mr Mitchell, that Australia’s reputation will suffer through its association with Israel. We should not be proud of our association with a state that commits war crimes, a state that is in defiance of a plethora of UN resolutions and a state that ignores the will of the international community.

Finally, two years ago you have published a poll showing that there is equal support for the Israelis and for the Palestinians (~11% each). Our new poll, which was conducted by Roy Morgan, shows that many more Australians are educated about the conflict and that they don’t support your stand on the conflict. Australians are learning about the facts and they are becoming interested in finding a solution to the conflict and the Australian population is neither fanatic nor extremist. Your editorial policy is at odds with the trend in Australia and the rest of the world. If those who promote peace and justice are now accused of being extremists and fanatics don’t you think this is rather a reflection on the extent that your newspaper’s editorial policy has shifted to the right?

Dr Bassam Dally is a confounder and member of the executive of the Australian Friends of Palestine Association.

3 comments ↪
  • ej

    Judas at least got 30 pieces of silver.

    Our Julia might at best get her name on a tree planted, as per usual, on stolen land.

    Will join the existing long line of illustrious Australian quislings – Hawke, Howard, etc.

  • ej

    When the unconscionable Rupert slips his mortal coil (or loses his marbles beforehand), and those prospects are imminent, can we look forward to the media outlets of News Limited abandoning their unflagging support for the criminal state of Israel?

    At least one of the children and possible successor, James, thinks that Rupe's ziomania is on the nose.

    But what to do with the pathetic hack that is Greg Sheridan?

    Patience.

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