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.

This is how the US deals with its wild child, Israel

Take news from the Middle East in the last 24 hours. Despairing, infuriating and tragic.

This:

The Palestinians pulled out of a new round of indirect peace talks last night, even before they had begun, as a protest at Israel‘s decision to announce approval for hundreds of new homes in a Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem.

The decision to pull out, announced in Cairo by Amr Moussa, head of the Arab League, represents a major setback to months of diplomacy by the US administration and comes after the US vice-president, Joe Biden, delivered an unusually strong rebuke to Israel.

And this:

Some 50,000 new housing units in Jerusalem neighborhoods beyond the Green Line are in various stages of planning and approval, planning officials told Haaretz. They said Jerusalem’s construction plans for the next few years, even decades, are expected to focus on East Jerusalem.

Most of the housing units will be built in predominantly Jewish neighborhoods beyond the Green Line, while a smaller number of them will be built in Arab neighborhoods. The plans for some 20,000 of the apartments are already in advanced stages of approval and implementation, while plans for the remainder have yet to be submitted to the planning committees.

The planned construction includes the 1,600 homes in the ultra-Orthodox East Jerusalem neighborhood of Ramat Shlomo that were approved Tuesday. Saying the decision undermines peace talks, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has publicly condemned the move, which the Interior Ministry announced during his visit to Israel.

Then this:

The U.S.-Israel bond is unbreakable, but the United States will keep both sides accountable for their actions, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said.

Biden’s address Thursday at Tel Aviv University, meant to have been an expression of friendship, was altered in part by Israel’s announcement this week that it planned to build 1,600 new housing units in disputed eastern Jerusalem.

Biden started by reaffirming the “unbreakable bond” between Israel and the United States, as he had done after his arrival earlier this week. The bond was “impervious to any shifts in either country and in either country’s partisan politics,” Biden said to applause.

He said it was critical for the international community to understand the bond: “Every time progress is made, it’s been made when the rest of the world knows there’s no space between the United States and Israel when it comes to Israel’s security, none — no space.”

Biden was blunt, however, when it came to his anger at being blindsided by the announcement of the housing starts, when he was in the West Bank meeting Palestinian leaders. “That decision undermined the trust required for negotiations,” Biden said, and under instructions from President Obama, “I condemned it immediately and unequivocally.” He added, to applause: “Sometimes only a friend can deliver the hardest truth.”

Biden accepted Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s explanation that he too was caught unawares by the announcement and praised Netanyahu for offering to set up a mechanism to prevent future such surprises.

Biden said such actions will have consequences. “The United States will continue to hold both sides accountable for any statements or any actions that inflame tensions and influence these talks,” he said.

And finally this:

Israeli police are improperly arresting Palestinian boys in nighttime raids in Jerusalem that involve assault rifle wielding security forces handcuffing minors and interrogating them without lawyers or parents, an Israeli rights group charged Tuesday.

Most of the youths were accused of hurling rocks at Jewish settlers and damaging their property in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Silwan, where tensions are high between settlers and Palestinian residents. Some of them have since been charged. Police say the arrests were legal, and a matter of law and order.

“They are using military-style night raids to extract children as young as 12,” said Sarit Michaeli of rights group B’tselem, which says the raids are an inappropriate method to detain children. They also argue the raids defy Israeli law, which demands children be accompanied by guardians while being arrested.

In affidavits to B’tselem, six boys aged between 12 and 14 years old described arrest raids involving around a dozen heavily armed military police surrounding their homes, handcuffing them and leading them to cells where they were slapped, kicked and told by interrogators to confess if they wanted to go home.

Some 40 boys have been taken into custody over the past year, and around half were 14 or younger, B’tselem said.

One of the boys, Ahmad Saim, 12, was arrested at around 3 a.m. on Jan. 10.

“I was made to kneel and face the wall and every time I moved a man … slapped me across the neck,” said Saim in an affidavit. Saim said an interrogator pushed him into the wall, causing a nose bleed.

no comments – be the first ↪