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.

Killing Gaza piece by piece

Gisha, the Israeli legal centre for Palestinian freedom of movement, released a new report this week:

Israel Weakening Gaza Infrastructure ahead of Next War

* Report released today says Gaza infrastructure collapse during war could have been prevented.
* Israel preventing the EU from providing sufficient quantities of fuel to the Gaza power plant
* The Gaza electric system is missing hundreds of items, with more than 30,000 stockpiled items waiting months for Israeli approval.
* More than 40% of spare parts needed for water system awaiting permits, some for two years.
* Tens of millions of liters of raw sewage dumped into sea and the groundwater, endangering Israel as well.
* At every opportunity, Israel’s Supreme Court approved policy of supply prevention.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009 – According to a new report by Gisha – Legal Center for Freedom of Movement, released today, Israel continues to harm civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip and to prevent rehabilitation of the heavy damage caused during its military offensive. The Gaza Electricity Distribution Company informed 1.5 million people in Gaza that, beginning this week, it will institute power outages of up to 10 hours a day, five days a week, because Israel refuses to allow transfer of enough industrial diesel to meet the needs of the population. Each week, the European Union, which is funding the fuel, orders increased amounts of industrial diesel for the power plant, but Israel limits the amount to 2.2 million liters, which it has defined – despite expert opinions to the contrary – as the “humanitarian minimum”. The resulting shortage seriously disrupts activities that are usually taken for granted: pumping running water, treating sewage, refrigerating medications and food, using washing machines, cooking and other basic needs.

Israel continues to block supply delivery, even though Gaza’s electricity system urgently needs hundreds of items that are either completely missing from its inventory or available in limited amounts. More than 30,000 items have been held up for months in Israel and the West Bank, waiting for an Israeli permit. Meanwhile, 10% of Gaza residents have been completely disconnected from electricity for more than six months, and tens of millions of liters of raw sewage are being dumped into the sea every day or are endangering the groundwater, including water used by Israel.

The new report, “Red Lines Crossed: Destruction of Gaza’s Infrastructure”, describes how in advance of its military offensive, Israel deliberately brought Gaza’s infrastructure to the brink of collapse; during the offensive, Israel bombed the infrastructure until it collapsed; and since then, Israel has prevented rehabilitation by continuing its policy of blocking supply delivery. The report also provides new information on the conduct of the Supreme Court, raising questions about the quality of the judicial review it exercises and casting doubts on the State’s allegations that the Supreme Court is willing to intervene in Israel’s activities concerning Gaza.

The report was sent to policy-makers with the demand that Israel allow the free entrance of industrial diesel, raw materials and spare parts into the Gaza Strip, to meet the needs of Gaza residents and their humanitarian infrastructure.

Nedal Toman, engineer, project manager at the Gaza Electricity Distribution Company: “The industrial diesel is a kind of humanitarian service for the public. Hamas can’t use it for missiles or even for transportation. It can only be used for the electricity sector and the power station.”

2 comments ↪
  • ej

    Old Testament sadism pure and simple.

    And comparison with Nazism is unacceptable?

  • Pingback: Gaza Digest | PINKtank()