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.

Why single out Israel?

Following my letter in last weekend’s Melbourne Sunday Age about the blog The Sensible Jew and parochial and bigoted Zionists, this letter is published today in response:

Antony Lowenstein subjects us to his usual wild and vicious diatribe against Israel and adds a call for a “campaign to boycott Israel” (Letters, 14/6). Sadly, one is no longer shocked by such anti-Israel statements. Anti-Zionism has become so widespread and “politically correct” and it is so extreme and so divorced from political and historic reality that one suspects that it masks even more dangerous and more ancient hatreds.

The call for a boycott of Israel is an indictment not only of Lowenstein’s political judgement — Israel is, after all, the only true democracy in the Middle East — but also of his commitment to democracy. Whatever happened to the idea that open and free debate, argument and counter-argument, are central and crucial to democratic discourse? Why would anyone call for a boycott of Israel when examples of regimes that really are awful abound? Does Lowenstein favour a boycott of China, Burma, Zimbabwe, Somalia, Iran, Sudan, Russia, North Korea?

Lowenstein would claim to be a progressive and clearly sees himself as the voice of progress. If his views do indeed represent progress and thus the future, I fear that there are dark days ahead for us all.

BILL ANDERSON, Surrey Hills

2 comments ↪
  • ej

    Even Nazi Germany had its defenders in the West, amongst the populace but especially in high places.

    After all, Germany was a nation of substance and high culture, and the Eastern European and Balkan countries and cultures were of a lower order. Hitler's desire to dominate their domains was part of the natural order of things. (Russia of course was not accorded the same status, being itself a nation of the lesser breeds.)

    German Jewry was a 'natural' casualty of a larger inevitable project.

    Bill Anderson is part of that glorious tradition of infamy, albeit on the rabid end of the spectrum.

    The Zionist support squad however are probably distinguished from earlier versions of the Imperial arrogance tradition by having to camouflage their racism through the pervasive dependence on outright lies and the attendant abuse of language.

    Palestinians are the new Jews, and Anderson is merely a gauleiter for the new master race.

    It's a sickness.

    Actually, AL hasn't singled out Israel. But what other unsavoury regime is the beneficiary of an army of foot soldiers who inundate the media with their undying devotion to Israel's bloodlust? And if Israel is given carte blanche for the entrenchment of inhumanity as its raison d'être, can we then do other than not merely condone but actively support comparable practices by various juntas against their own populations?

    It's a sickness.

  • moonkoon

    "…vicious diatribe against Israel"
    …masks even more dangerous and more ancient hatreds
    …fear that there are dark days ahead for us all."

    This appears to be standard boilerplate Zionist blather.
    I'm an expert on this stuff, I've been reading it on and off for a few years now and can spot it a mile off.

    The real giveaway is where, in the last sentence, the correspondent reveals that criticism of the current Israeli regime is not something for Israel to address, but rather, it is everyone else's problem.
    This type of blame shifting/veiled threat is a well established Zionist talking point.

    "…He (Olmert) said Germany "may have economic interests (with Iran),
    but you have much deeper and more fundamental moral obligations to
    yourselves, your past and your future".
    "And no one will be able to avoid it, and get away with it. No-one…
    12 Dec 2006"
    http://www.spiegel.de/international/0,1518,453934

    Antony, you should take this "vicious diatribe" as a compliment. You must be landing a few blows on the local lockstep monolith in this most lapdog of nations. 🙂