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.

Fundamentalist Jews run riot in Jerusalem

Tensions in Silwan in Jerusalem are growing, not least because Israel continues to expand settlements in complete violation of international law.

So much for a settlement freeze.

Protests against the latest moves are growing but why aren’t such reports in the international media?

Another night sets in on Silwan. Just two days ago, hundreds of Israeli and Palestinian demonstrators marched together along the narrow streets of the neighborhood, to support the local residents, facing the municipality’s plan to demolish 22 houses. But here, as anywhere in east Jerusalem, happenings do not cease for a moment.

In previous weeks, more and more appeals to the solidarity activists of Sheikh Jarrah  came in from the residents of Silwan. In view of our successful campaign, more and more Palestinians have been trying to find a way for Arab-Jewish cooperation. During recent tours in Silwan, we all had a sense of urgency and shared destiny. We must act, and act fast, before catastrophe hits us, before the abyss becomes too deep and wide to bridge. And we must act together, against all the risks and against all the suspicion which has built up here over the years.

And now we are here, climbing up the narrow alleys, together with the locals. Just one hour ago, tens of private security guards, escorted by border policemen, entered Palestinian homes around “Beit Hadvash” (house of honey in Hebrew…) and “Beit Yehonatan”. The settlers have only managed to seize two houses in this area, but this is enough to bring the place to the brink of eruption. Nightly border police patrols, private security personnel, armed with guns, undercover policemen and “Mistaarvim” (Israeli soldiers disguised as Arabs) have turned the place into a war zone.

This alley is narrow, dark. Tens of meters above us, shots are being fired and explosions can be heard. A helicopter is hovering above us, projecting rays of light onto alleys where the municipality has never thought of installing street lights. Twenty activists cling to the walls, and keep going forward.

All of a sudden the alley comes to an end, and a battlefield lies ahead of us. The small street around Beit Hadvash is all strewn with rifle bullet casings, unexploded grenades and the parts of destroyed cars. The soldiers are standing in groups at the entrances to houses and on the balconies, shooting into the houses around them. Our group disperses immediately into various houses, among groups of locals gazing with despair at what is happening around them. I run after a Palestinian paramedic into one of the houses. Soldiers are hiding in the stairway, blocking us, and trying to prevent us from progressing. Eventually they let us pass, and we reach the wounded. The three storey house is full of tear gas. The windows are all shattered, their frames lying on the floor. We go up, floor by floor, scanning the apartments. In most of them, we find families huddled together, scared people, little children, women, and wounded people lying on the floor. In the living room of one apartment, a young girl is lying on a stretcher. For two hours she has been waiting to be evacuated, after the soldiers had prevented ambulances from moving in. And in the next room I can see a few little children sitting in front of the computer. That’s just the way it is here. Apartments, families, a life that has suddenly become hell. But some of those living here insist on going on with their lives.

The wounded are taken down, one by one, on stretchers, into the street. From here one still has to run quickly, a few hundred meters along the alleys, towards the ambulances on standby. During one of the “heats”, I fall behind, momentarily fearing the race between the gas grenades and the rubber bullets. And staying alone here is bad. I try to stay close to the wall, but it doesn’t seem to help. Two gas grenades land next to me. Godammit, they could have seen me just a second ago, they knew I was trying to evacuate the wounded. Not that it matters. Luckily, a few locals rescue me from that alley. After one hour, it’s all over. The soldiers withdraw towards the outskirts of the neighborhood, leaving behind a trail of devastation. A leaking water pipe, cars smashed by military jeeps and shooting, shattered windows and five wounded people. And tens of families who are about to sleep outside their tear gas flooded apartments, tonight too. And all this in the name of defending a house where nobody has ever lived, a house which, according to the owner’s claim, the settlers simply took over one day.

one comment ↪
  • melinda huntley

    My god what a story!  Where is the mainstream media?  I am stunned.