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.

Look, says reporter, we’re winning the war in Afghanistan…the military says so

How many Western journalists either fell for the spin or were happy to propagate lies helpfully provided by Washington and her allies?

The U.S. media told the public for weeks that a big, offensive battle was taking place in Marja, in Afghanistan, a “city of 80,000 people” in Helmand province which was also the logistical hub of the Taliban. The description gave the impression that the U.S. presence in Marja was a major strategic objective, and that the city was more important than other district centers in the province. But the picture the military painted of Marja and duly reported by a biddable news media was one of the most dramatic pieces of misinformation so far in the entire war, aimed at hyping the offensive as a big turning point in the conflict. In truth, Marja is not a city or even a town, but either a few groups of farmers’ homes or a large farming area encompassing much of the southern Helmand River Valley. The sparsley populated area is completely rural, with no incorporated city or town. The fiction that Marja was a city of 80,000 got started at a briefing given by officials on February 2 at the U.S. Marine base called Camp Leatherneck. Officials referred to Marja as a populous city. The Associated Press put out an article that same day saying they expected up to 1,000 insurgents were “holed up” in the “southern Afghan town of 80,000 people,” a statement that evoked a picture of house-to-house, urban street fighting. ABC News perpetuated the myth the next day, in a story that referred to the “city of Marja” and claiming that the city and its surrounding area were “more heavily populated, urban and dense than other places the Marines so far have been able to clear and hold.” The rest of the news media fell in line, giving fake descriptions of a densely populated, urban Marja, often using the terms “city” and “town” interchangeably, without fact-checking the descriptions. On February 22, the Washington Post reported that the decision to launch the big offensive against Marja was intended largely to impress U.S. public opinion with the military’s effectiveness in Afghanistan by showing that it could achieve a “large and loud victory.” The false idea that Marja was a significantly large city center was an essential part of that message.

3 comments ↪
  • Mallee

    The public must know by now that; anything any government, bureacrat, politician, or news hound announces, must be presumed to be a lie unless there is plenty of independent corroboration to support what is said.

    A sad indictment of our alleged democracies; our alleged 'freedoms' are a mere illusion.

    No wonder why they want to 'filter' the internet. It exposes their lies.

    If we want to regain, if we ever had it, our 'democracies' we  must vehemently oppose those who threaten the internet.

    Rudd, Connolly, you lot listening?

  • iResistDe4iAm

    From 1961 to 1968, the U.S. was also winning the war in Vietnam. They were even winning the hearts and minds of a majority of the US public back home. Then came the Tet Offensive in 1968, which even though it was won decisively by the US and South Vietnamese, it burst the bubble of US invincibility, triggered a wake up call for the US media, and empowered the fledgling US anti-war movement. 

     

    From 1969 after a change of government, the US public were promised an 'honorable exit'. Then in April 1975, the Americans beat a hasty, chaotic and panicked retreat, abandoning their South Vietnamese allies. 

     

    I wonder how the US media would react if there was an Afghan 'Tet Offensive', or an Iraqi one, or god forbid, both Afghan and Iraqi offensives? 

     

    Wikipedia estimates the Vietnam War casualties and losses as follows:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vietnam_War
       

    South Vietnamese civilian dead: ~1,581,000

    Cambodian civilian dead:              ~700,000

    North Vietnamese civilian dead: ~2,000,000

    Laotian civilian dead:                     ~50,000 

     

    South Vietnam 220,357 dead; 1,170,000 wounded

      US 58,159 dead; 1,724 missing; 303,635 wounded

      South Korea 4,960 dead; 10,962 wounded

      Kingdom of Laos 30,000 killed, wounded unknown

      Australia 520 dead; 2,400 wounded

      New Zealand 37 dead; 187 wounded

      Thailand 1,351 dead

    Total dead: 315,831

    Total wounded: ~1,490,000+ 

     

    North Vietnam & NLF 1,176,000 dead/missing; 600,000+ wounded

      P.R. China 1,446 dead; 4,200 wounded

      Soviet Union 16 dead

    Total dead: ~1,177,446

    Total wounded: ~604,000 

     

    What was the US (and Australia) fighting for again?

    But isn't Vietnam still under Communist rule?

    5.8 million dead (plus many more maimed and wounded) for naught.

  • Towgrunt

    All you have to do is watch the poor Marines outposted in Valleys surrounded by Mountains and you can easily come to the conclusion we are not even trying to win this War