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.

Zionist lobby? Never heard of it, doesn’t exist

This is worth sharing from today’s Sydney Morning Herald. Little needs to be said except how it shows the growing hysteria of Jews against anybody who dares say anything about Israeli crimes.”Anti-Semitism” has lost its meaning with such frivolous and desperate tactics (which are increasingly failing):

The Australian Press Council has considered a complaint by Judy Maynard about two items in The Sydney Morning Herald on June 12 and 19, 2010, by the columnist Mike Carlton. Both related to the encounter between Israeli forces and a number of vessels attempting to reach Gaza (the ”Gaza flotilla”) in May. They followed a column by Mr Carlton on June 5, which was highly critical of the Israeli conduct in the encounter.

In the column on June 12 Mr Carlton said that the previous column had led to ”hundreds of Jewish emailers” responding to him. He added: ”It is a ferocious beast, the Jewish lobby. Write just one sentence even mildly critical of Israel and it lunges from its lair, fangs bared.” And: ”The Israel lobby, worldwide, is orchestrated in Jerusalem by a department in the Prime Minister’s office.” In the item on June 19, Mr Carlton wrote: ”With bottomless irony, the Jewish lobby spent much of last week assuring anybody who would listen that there is no such thing as the Jewish lobby.”

Ms Maynard complained about the first item to Mr Carlton and to the newspaper on June 12. Having had no response, she complained on June 14 to the council and also wrote a letter to the newspaper that was not published. On June 16 the newspaper responded saying her comments had been brought to the attention of relevant senior editors and inviting her to consider sending a letter for publication. On June 19 the second item was published and Ms Maynard wrote another letter to the newspaper that also was not published.

In her complaint to the council, Ms Maynard firmly acknowledged that Mr Carlton had the right to express his opinion and that, for example, it is not anti-Semitic to criticise Israel. But, she said, the two items contained ”anti-Semitic elements and bring opprobrium on Jews through the use of racist imagery [and] factually incorrect statements”. She referred in particular to what she called the ”bestial” imagery and the implication that all critics of Mr Carlton must be, in her words, ”tools in an orchestrated campaign” by the Israeli government. She complained about use of the term ”Jewish lobby” as depicting advocates for that cause as being ”sinister”.

The Sydney Morning Herald replied by emphasising that the writers of opinion articles are entitled to express their views and to do so in a forceful manner. It referred to ”hundreds of emails, some of them crude and racist”, being received by Mr Carlton and to his use of ”strong and colourful language … to describe the ferocity of those who wrote”. It denied the allegations of anti-Semitism but said that Mr Carlton believed many of the email responses showed very clear evidence of co-ordination and that ”there is such a thing as a ‘Jewish lobby’ ”. It provided details on a department in the Israeli government it said was the originator of many of the arguments used in emails to him. The newspaper provided the council with some quotations from emails and press releases supporting his assertions about co-ordination of responses, and also with copies of the 12 letters that it had published, many of them critical of Mr Carlton, in which the issues raised by Ms Maynard were canvassed.

In relation to Ms Maynard’s complaints of anti-Semitism, the council considered that the columns did not breach its principle that material should avoid placing gratuitous emphasis on a particular ethnicity, religion or nationality. The council acknowledged that the columns were strongly critical, and that some readers would have been offended, but it emphasised that causing offence does not, in itself, justify a complaint being upheld.

The council’s principles require that, although individual articles need not always be balanced, publications should seek to provide reasonable balance in their overall coverage of the issues in question. It was satisfied that the newspaper had done so in this general area, including through its publication in this instance of letters critical of Mr Carlton.

In relation to the question of accuracy, the council did not consider that Mr Carlton’s reference to co-ordination of a ”Jewish lobby” or an ”Israel lobby” had been an assertion of fact about all critics of his views, and it did not consider that his claims of co-ordination on a more limited scale, which he had made, had been shown to be incorrect.

For these reasons, the council dismissed the complaint.

one comment ↪
  • The Australian Press Council has made some astonishing judgments over the years, but this is NOT one of them. Zionist lobbies, Israeli Lobbies, Jewish lobbies – call them what one will, but not only do they exist, their pernicious and ongoing accusations of anti-semitism are just a smokescreen for their own propagation of anti-semitism around the world.

    The person who complained is yet another zionist who is unable to see the harm caused by the actions of the Israeli government, and as for those who post to sites such as Antony Loewenstein's, it has been shown time and time again, that multiple postings have come from one source and this has happened around the world to anyone who has blogs critical of Israel and the zionists.

    I still keep asking – if these people are so worried about criticism of their beloved Israel, why don't they go and live there?

    Why they don't is because they are so much more comfortable in Australia – and safer from those pesky Arabs and Palestinians!