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.

How threatened are Jews by alternative views? (hint: a lot)

Parochial Jews love to feel like victims, despite the fact that they’re largely a successful, connected and wealthy community. Being a victim is terribly effective politically, despite its inherent dishonesty.

In that tradition, here’s a recent letter in the Australian Jewish News:

Where would we Australian Jews be without our demons? Without (in no particular order) The Age, the ABC, SBS, Antony Loewenstein, the Australian Jewish Democratic Society, Barack Obama, Justice Richard Goldstone, Louise Adler, Noam Chomsky, John Pilger, the United Nations, Amnesty International, and the Australian Labor Party? Forget the KKK, the British National Party and the Holocaust deniers. They belong to the past.

STEVE BROOK
Elwood, Vic

And a response the week after:

Steve Brook (AJN 23/10) asks “where would we Australian Jews be without our demons?” Among the latter he includes The Age, the ABC, SBS, Antony Loewenstein, the Australian Jewish Democratic Society and Richard Goldstone.

The real demons, however, are those he doesn’t list. They include allegations of deicide; the “blood libel” (still current in some Arab states); forced expulsions; the Chmielnitski massacre in the Ukraine in the 17th century; Babi Yar; the six million who perished in the Shoah; Arab anti-Semitism; the bombing of Argentina’s Jewish centre in 1994; the Park Hotel bombing in Netanya in 2002; Ahmadinejad; threats of nuclear holocaust; and the plot, albeit foiled, to blow up the Riverdale Jewish Centre in New York just a few months ago.

Tragically, this list is not even close to being exhaustive.

DR DAVID WEINTROB
Caulfield, Vic

3 comments ↪
  • ej

    These people are out of their fucking tree.

    Compulsory residence in Gaza or Hebron, etc.. etc. for twelve months should serve to shake the hysteria, no doubt inculcated in faith schools that kept them from exposure to the real world.

  • ej

    The quality that pervades this crap, apart from the ersatz paranoia, is the racism towards the Arab world. 

    Anti-semitism is historically a phenomenon of the Christian world. The contribution of Zionism and actually-existing Israel to the enmity of the Arab and Muslim worlds has been effaced from chain of causality.

    And these are people no doubt with an excess of formal education. All for nought where it matters.

    The AJN needs a classification not yet in the film censors' spectrum – for paranoid and hysterial viewers only, mature audiences beware, extremely dangerous to the underaged.

    These people live physically in an integrated world, yet there is an isolation (self-imposed) harking back to the shtetl.

    The life of the shtetl was steeped in principle; the life of these people is steeped in a lie.

  • epi

    the Chmielnitski massacre in the Ukraine in the 17th century

    If one is actually personally worried about something that happened to people in the 17thC, then I think we are seeing evidence of actual mental illness here.