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.

Jewish students in Canada won’t accept Zionist censorship

Aaron Lakoff is a communications student at Concordia University in Canada and a member of Not In Our Name Concordia, a campus-based anti-Zionist Jewish group:

The Israel/Palestine debate has been a controversial topic at Concordia in recent years. However, there is a point when discussion on a controversial issue can be used as a pretext for censorship and repression. With recent political manoeuvring within and beyond Concordia around this issue, I fear that we may be moving in that direction.

The presidents of some 25 Canadian universities were invited to Ottawa this week to testify at the Canadian Parliamentary Inquiry Into anti-Semitism, an initiative of the Canadian Parliamentary Coalition to Combat anti-Semitism. Frederick Lowy, who was Concordia’s president until 2005, testified on Nov. 24.

As a Jewish student at Concordia myself, some might find it odd that I would oppose such a forum and the participation of personalities from my university.

I would be in favour of the CPCCA if its purpose were to fight real anti-Semitism, but a closer examination shows us that this is definitely not the case. The CPCCA is merely a tool to stifle debate on Israeli apartheid at Canadian university campuses and elsewhere.

The CPCCA is by no means neutral or unbiased. The two ex-officio members of its steering committee are Liberal MP Irwin Cotler and Conservative Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Jason Kenney. Both have openly equated critiques of Israeli policy to anti-Semitism. Kenney went so far as to denounce Israeli Apartheid Week, stating the international event had no place on Canadian university campuses.

Even more troubling is that the CPCCA has made the “new anti-Semitism” a large part of its focus. This “new anti-Semitism” is an intellectually dishonest phrase used to equate principled opposition to the state of Israel’s policies as an attack against all Jewish people.

Ontario-based Faculty for Palestine sent a submission to the CPCCA criticizing the notion of a “new anti-Semitism,” stating, “this focus on the ‘new’ anti-Semitism orients the work of the CPCCA more towards targeting advocacy for Palestinian rights than to protecting the human rights of Jewish people.”

There is no “new” anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism, much like racism or sexism, never went away, and it is everyone’s responsibility to combat it.

Last February, just before IAW, B’nai Brith (which touts itself as a Jewish human rights organization) took out a full-page ad in the National Post calling on Canadian universities to shut down the event, calling it a “hate-fest.” If anyone from B’nai Brith had bothered to attend any IAW public events in Montreal, they would have found that they were scholarly, principled, and featured many events with Jewish and Palestinian speakers.

Unfortunately, those like B’nai Brith who seek to shut down this debate have the ear of the Concordia administration. Last August, Concordia’s President Judith Woodsworth gave the opening remarks at a one-day conference entitled “Israel on Campus: Defending Our Universities,” held in the McConnell library building. For an entire day, the building was off-limits to Concordia students seeking to use the library and Woodsworth’s remarks, despite numerous requests, have never been made public.

There are no “hate-fests” happening on Canadian campuses. Acts of anti-Semitism do occur, but Lowy himself remarked at the CPCCA’s hearing that universities are not hotbeds for anti-Semitism or hate.

He curiously went on to pin vague allegations of anti-Semitism on “Islamists” who distribute “propaganda” at Concordia. Evidently, from his and other testimonies the CPCCA’s hearings are less concerned with combating anti-Semitism than they are about race-baiting and stirring Islamophobia.

I believe that Israel is an apartheid state for the simple reason that it grants preferential treatment to its Jewish citizens while denying certain rights to its Palestinian Arab population solely based on religious and ethnic identity. Some readers may not think that Israel is an apartheid state and have every right to believe so. Regardless, this is a matter of legitimate and important debate and it is fundamental that we give it space to be debated at Concordia at forums such as Israeli Apartheid Week.

I take serious offence to the persecution of my people being used as political cannon fodder for censorship and fear-mongering.

In a chilling turn of events last February, both Carleton and University of Ottawa administrations banned the IAW poster from campus. The poster depicted an Israeli army helicopter shooting at a Palestinian child.

Sadly, over 300 Palestinian children were killed by the Israeli military during the brutal assault on Gaza in January. How this poster’s message became twisted into being “offensive” or “anti-Semitic” is puzzling. It seems that the CPCCA’s formulation is that the ‘old’ anti-Semitism entailed silence in the face of ethnic cleansing, while the ‘new’ anti-Semitism means resistance in the face of ethnic cleansing.

I will not tolerate anti-Semitism at Concordia, nor an administration that censors and stifles debate around Israeli apartheid. If we head down the road that the CPCCA is leading us, even the term “anti-Semitism” will become meaningless, and we will not be able to effectively fight it in the future.

one comment ↪
  • Hello from New York!

    Glad to hear there is a Jewish anti-Zionist group at Concordia. How I wish that (in parallel to J-Street, which is a valuable Jewish prop-Israel organization), the USA also had a, what? JP-Street, a Jewish pro-Palestinian group which would include anti-Zionist Jews without difficulty, perhaps unlike J-Street.

    As to the "new anti-Semitism", it must be said and said again, as I'm sure you do, that "anti-Semitism" must be hatred at ALL Jews because of what they ARE (religion, race, nation, whatever), and cannot be merely anger (or hatred) directed against SOME Jews because of what they DO (as anger or hatred against Israeli Jews in whole or in part might be).

    Don't many people of the world "love" Americans (USAers) even when they "hate" what the military and government of the USA do?

    Your group does one valuable work in particular — making it possible for all the world to see that Zionism and Judaism are not co-terminous, not identical. Even if many Canadian Jews support Israel unthinkingly (as many USA Jews do), the existence of your group helps ignorant people (perhaps including some Canadian and USA politicians) see that not all Jews are pro-Zionist and that anti-Zionism is not anti-Semitism.