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.

Iceland and Wikileaks see a happy future together

There’s must be something in the water in Iceland. This is brave, important, likely to cause many states to scream loudly and bloody necessary in an age of

After Iceland’s near-economic collapse laid bare deep-seated corruption, the country aims to become a safe haven for journalists and whistleblowers from around the globe by creating the world’s most far-reaching freedom of information legislation.

The project, developed with the help of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, flies in the face of a growing tendency of governments trying to stifle a barrage of secret and embarrassing information made readily available by the Internet.

On June 16, a unanimous parliament, or Althing, voted in favour of the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative (IMMI), a resolution aimed at protecting investigative journalists and their sources.

“We took all the best laws from around the world and pulled them together, just like tax havens do, in order to create freedom of information and expression, a transparency haven,” Birgitta Jonsdottir, the member of parliament behind the initiative, told AFP.

Describing herself as an “anarchist,” the 43-year-old said she had decided to get into politics to seize the opportunities to change the system in Iceland following its dramatic financial collapse at the end of 2008.

Jonsdottir was shocked to witness the attempts at censorship in her country, which had long been held up as a model democracy.

In the most resounding example, a court injunction in August 2009 forced Icelandic public broadcaster RUV to back down at the last minute from transmitting a report on one of the country’s three largest banks that all went belly-up less than a year earlier, pushing Iceland to the verge of bankruptcy.

Instead of its report on the Kaupthing bank’s loanbook, RUV broadcast images from whistleblower site WikiLeaks, which had published the incriminating documents, in an attempt to draw attention to the limits being put on freedom of expression in Iceland.

“Freedom of information and freedom of speech are the pillars of democracy. Now, if you don’t have that, you don’t really have a democracy,” said Jonsdottir, wearing ‘Free Tibet’ and ‘Wikileaks’ pins on her jacket.

Blaming the threat of terrorism, “all countries are facing new sets of laws which are making it more difficult in particular for investigative journalists and book writers,” she lamented.

The aspiring ‘island of transparency’ aims to strengthen source protection, encourage whistleblowers to leak information and help counter so-called “libel tourism,” which consists in dragging journalists before foreign courts in countries with laws that best suit the prosecution.

The idea is to imitate and combine the existing most far-reaching laws in countries renowned for their freedom of expression, like the United States, Sweden and Belgium.

“I don’t think that there is anything radical in (IMMI). The radicalism around it is to pull these laws together,” Jonsdottir said.

“We have seen that really (such protections) are necessary,” said WikiLeaks founder Assange, whose name became legend after his site last month published nearly 77,000 classified US military documents on the war in Afghanistan.

“That’s our experience in the developing world and in most developed countries: that the press is being routinely censored by abusive legal actions,” he said recently in a video posted on Youtube.

Assange, who spends much of his time in Iceland and other countries where the legislation is more in his favour, created WikiLeaks’ first global scoop in Reykjavik earlier this year.

Locked up for weeks at a time in a house in the Icelandic capital with the curtains constantly drawn, he and a handful of other WikiLeaks supporters managed to decrypt and post online a military video showing a US military Apache helicopter strike in Baghdad in 2007 that killed two Reuters employees and a number of other people.

WikiLeaks along with a number of non-governmental organisations and international celebrities like European member of parliament Eva Joly have contributed to developing IMMI.

Journalists in Iceland and abroad have applauded the initiative.

“By offering tight protection to the sources, it will be a lot safer to report on abuses in the government or in the corporate community,” said Wikileaks insider and Icelandic freelance reporter Kristinn Hrafnsson.

“When you know you can pass on information safely, you’re more prone to do it,” he told AFP.

But the resolution will also have implications beyond Iceland’s borders.

“In countries where they are oppressed such as China and Sri Lanka, journalists risk their lives,” Jonsdottir declared.

“We can’t help them with that, but at least we can ensure that their stories won’t be removed” from the Internet, by posting them on servers located in Iceland where the censors cannot get at them, she said.

According to Jonsdottir, it will take about a year and a half — the estimated time required to change at least 13 existing laws — before IMMI will go into effect.

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