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.

The Washington way is to embrace its Jewish friend and hold tight

Washington’s aim in life seems to be to protect its little mate, Israel. Sweet. Here’s a quote from a few days ago that can’t be forgotten:

“The situation is that they’re so isolated right now that it’s not only that we’re the only ones who will stick up for them,” said an American official. “We’re the only ones who believe them — and what they’re saying is true.”

Who cares about truth? The American way is to back Israel to the hilt. And this has nothing to do with Jewish donations, the Zionist lobby, the mid-term elections and a deluded view of American interests? No, not at all.

The Cable has the full picture:

As Monday’s deadly naval commando raid off the coast of Gaza escalated from a regional incident to an international crisis, U.S. and Israeli officials scrambled to contain the damage, working at the highest levels to forge a common diplomatic position and preserve indirect peace talks that took months of painful negotiations to bring about.

U.S President Barack Obama has been personally and deeply involved in the U.S. response, speaking with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu three times since the crisis began.

“There’s an intensive effort being made here to make sure this incident doesn’t have any effect on our common interests,” an Israeli official told The Cable on background basis.

In their first call, Netanyahu simply informed Obama that he wouldn’t be able to make his planned trip to Washington. In their second call, the Israeli prime minister gave a detailed explanation of what happened on the Miva Marmara, the Turkish vessel where Israeli troops say they were attacked with knives, wooden clubs, and long metal rods-and fought back with lethal force, killing at least 10 activists. The two leaders’ third call was to discuss and coordinate strategy on how to deal with Monday’s emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council, which early Tuesday morning issued a statement on the incident that represented something less than what Turkey and Arab countries had demanded.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton also spoke with Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak over the phone, and there have been a flurry of other contacts as well, with Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren having conversations with top National Security Council staff and others.

The U.S. effort to pare down the language of the Security Council statement condemning “acts” related to the effort was also a success, according to the Israeli official.

“Definitely the Americans were making an effort, maybe they didn’t get as much as we hoped, but they got a lot,” the official said.

“We’d like to express our thanks to the United States that worked behind the scenes to water down the [statement] at the United Nations,” said Mark Regev, an Israeli government spokesman.

Those efforts were led by U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice and her deputy, Alejandro Wolff.  A key point of contention in the Security Council was whether there would be an outside investigation of the Miva Marmara affair, or whether it would be sufficient that Israel conduct its own inquiry. The United State has “every confidence that Israel can conduct a credible and impartial, transparent, prompt investigation internally,” Wolff told reporters today.

Although Israel has not issued any official reaction, the officials saw three main changes between the first draft circulated by Turkey and the final draft adopted, which they credit to the work of the U.S. delegation. First, there was no mention of an independent investigation. Second, there was no time limit placed on the investigation. Third, there was no direct condemnation of Israel.

Overall, the Obama administration is “trying to contain things, trying to calm things down,” the official said, pointing to the fact that the president’s Middle East peace envoy, former Senator George Mitchell, is heading back to the region tomorrow.

The White House announced the visit as a presidential delegation to the Palestinian investment conference. The delegation will include Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin, top USAID official Alonzo Fulgham, Mitchell’s deputy Mara Rudman, and Ziad Asali, president of the American Task Force on Palestine.

The conference is scheduled for Thursday, and the proximity talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority are expected to resume, with Mitchell mediating on Friday in Jerusalem and then on Saturday and Sunday in the West Bank.

The main goal of the intensive U.S.-Israel communications on the Gaza incident is how to contain this incident to make sure it doesn’t have an effect on the proximity talks, the Israeli official said. For now, the Palestinian Authority hasn’t said it will pull out of the talks, and the Israeli position is full steam ahead. “From our point of view, there’s no reason to postpone.”

“I don’t think this has to interfere at all negatively on the peace process,” said Regev. “We want to see the talks succeed.”

“I think that containing Hamas can be an important element in moving forward with the peace process,” he added.

The Gaza flotilla incident has put the Obama administration in the difficult position — trying to support its chief regional ally, Israel, while being seen as an honest broker in Israel-Arab relations and foiling the efforts of another important Middle East ally, Turkey, to punish Jerusalem.

Accordingly, the State Department’s latest statement supports Israel’s drive to keep control over the investigation, while also trying to put the focus back on the proximity talks.

“The United States deeply regrets the tragic loss of life and injuries suffered among those involved in the incident today aboard the Gaza-bound ships.  We are working to ascertain the facts, and expect that the Israeli government will conduct a full and credible investigation,” State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said in a statement, “Ultimately, this incident underscores the need to move ahead quickly with negotiations that can lead to a comprehensive peace in the region.”

But how to read Hillary Clinton’s comment over Gaza when she said the situation was “unsustainable and unacceptable”?

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