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.

One Jew pleads to not take silence as agreement

The response to Peter Slezak’s article in today’s Sydney Morning Herald on speaking critically about Israel has attracted a number of fascinating responses online, including this one by “repressed Jew” which is deeply distressing. This is what modern Zionism and Judaism has become. Rank tribalism, little independent thought and blind allegiance to the “party line”:

I can personally attest to the vilification, attempts at suppression and humiliation inflicted on people who try to speak out against Israels policies from within the Jewish communities. It goes like this – as soon as an ‘incident’ happens, the ‘mainstream’ Israeli line is so quickly disseminated by those in charge of the important Jewish institutions within the Jewish communities (governing bodies, the AJN, the various political bodies) that by the time people get their heads around what has happened the paradigm of ‘feisty little Israel bravely showing the world the ‘truth’ and highlighting the inherent anti-Semitism of the media’ is already flourishing out there. I swear, with this flotilla incident that happened so quickly that even those who can react quickly were pipped to the post. Without a standard pre-prepared body of material, I just don’t know how it could happen so quickly. From this point, any one who speaks about what they really think is not speaking into a vacuum, it is viewed as not just giving one’s personal thoughts, it is viewed as a deliberate and hardened attempt at self-sabotage, as a targeted attack at the fabric of Israeli and Jewish society. It is violently, aggressively ridiculed and shouted down. the atmosphere of fear is contagious, and many more people than actually believe the ‘party-line’ join in. The thing is, though – there are many people within the Jewish community who do not agree with the bulk of Israel’s actions. I have spoken to these people, I know that they exist.

However, they do not want to become alienated from their community by speaking out. Virtually no-one holds views as extreme as Antony Loewenstein, but absolutely no-one wants to be subjected to the horrendous vilification he has suffered (he is commonly thought to have utterly abandoned any ‘Jewishness’ because of his opposition to Israel, and has been ostracised by the entire community). And so they are (mostly) silent. The most commonly held view is that one must toe the party line in public, and save any criticism of Israel for the Shabbat table. A further complicating factor is that most within the community trust those that run their institutions implicitly; a societal practice that I think is generally suspect. I believe that one should be a good person before one can be a good Jew, and that the two are not mutually exclusive. So please don’t silence equals support, and please, if someone from within the community speaks up, their voice is worth consideration.

9 comments ↪
  • Mallee

    'repress':

    "1. 'To check by or as by pressure; to restrain; curb.

    2. To suppress by exercising force, to quell; also to subdue.

    3. To prevent the natural or normal expression, activity or development."

    What a sad existence!

    Then again, our politicians clearly wallow in such an existence with delight in our 'democratic' illusion that; "they hate us for".

  • Nicole

    It is so difficult to reconcile how such educated, affluent people can demonstrate such primitive behaviour, despite having witnessed/experienced it myself.  It is just so crazy. I still don't know of any Jews deeply integrated in these communities who are not too terrified of the sort of vilification this commenter is illustrating to speak out. Everyone seems to be either on the fringes, or distanced completely (hopefully I just don't know better).  I do think moral support is imperative though, and that with slowly growing numbers of disaffected Jews supporting one another (and with the internet and social networking making it easier to find them), it is making it easier for people to have the courage they need to speak out.

  • ej

    Virtually no-one holds views as extreme as Antony Loewenstein, but absolutely no-one wants to be subjected to the horrendous vilification he has suffered (he is commonly thought to have utterly abandoned any ‘Jewishness’ because of his opposition to Israel, and has been ostracised by the entire community).

    AL holds extreme views? Hello?

    Even Repressed Jew can't escape from the fog.

    AL merely lives in the real world, having moved out of the ghetto.

    And speaking of ghettoes, there is a letter in today's Age from one Michael Lipshutz, from the ghetto of all Australian ghettoes, that of Caulfield, where no light enters from reality. The usual pack of lies about Hamas. Where do they get this shit? from the packet of their kosher cornflakes over breakfast?

    And what is the role of the 'faith' schools in all this. A socialisation into a 'love of Israel' has been on the mission statements of many of them, curiously coincident with some blah about installation of fundamental moral values.

    And finally, AL is presumed to have abandoned 'Jewishness'. Just how would one recognise degrees of 'Jewishness'. If the answer involves any mention of Israel, then we're really in deep deep trouble.

  • Don

    Repressed Jew :

    Thank you for your brave & decent  comments .  You are obviously a worthwhile human being , & I am very greatly relived to hear that people like you exist .

     But , like you , I also have a problem       –

      "(Antony has) ..utterly abandoned any jewishness because of his opposition to Israel .."  –    Sorry , R.J . , but I've got to ask you  :   – 

    Proper Jews  who are Australian citizens (whether dual Israeli citizens also , or not)   –   are they required to look their fellow (Australian) citizens directly in the eyes & say that  black is white  ,  IF that helps Zionism ?   irrespective of whether Israel is right or wrong ?  irrespective of whether that damages Australia ?

    What sort of traitorous deceitful confection is this self-isolating Jewishness that you speak of  ?

  • Nicole

    I think you guys are being unnecessarily defensive here. Firstly, compared to his/her friends and family, RJ has a radical view. And their view is still probably reasonably conservative still. So it’s really unsurprising that he/she would think AL is extreme. Changing your worldview is a process; it takes time and energy that RL probably doesn’t have while spending a lot of time defending (or feeling anxiety over the need to..er..repress) their current position. They may eventually arrive at the same conclusions as AL, but people don’t have insight into what their endpoint will be while they’re in the middle of a big change in the way they think.

    Secondly, I’m not sure if RJ was saying that they themselves perceived AL to have abandoned his “Jewishness”, I think they were saying it was a common perception in the way people around him thought (and seriously, having read stuff by people like Philip Mendes, I’m not surprised). Perception is one thing, and reality another.

  • iResistDe4iAm

    "Virtually no-one holds views as extreme as Anthony Lowenstein, but absolutely no-one wants to be subjected to the horrendous vilification he has suffered

     

    Welcome to this site "repressed jew". 

     

    BTW it's Antony Loewenstein (not Anthony Lowenstein). I hope you find the answers to your Israel Question.

  • Bernard Rooney

    Perhaps it might be compared to the 'party line' of the former Communist Parties.

    Years and even decades after the truth about Stalinism  was known, these 'useful idiots' were loyally propogating Soviet lies and enforcing discipline in the party.

    There's no excuse for not knowing the truth at this point.

    At some point the machine will break down, totally discredited.

  • Kevin Charles Herber

    Bernard Rooney: you're right..the comparison between the Soviets & the Jews belief systems is illuminating.

    In the case of the Soviets, recognising the reality of Uncle Jo's obscene state apparatus was/is just too big a step emotionally for those who continued to idolise him.

    This situation is clearly currently the case for a substantail number of Jews globally, even though unlike Zionists globally, the majority did not know of his tyrannical reign until well after WW2…it's a V BIG difference in that respect.

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