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.

Don’t see Iran as freedom fighters

While Hugo Chavez shamefully embraces Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and utterly ignores Tehran’s horrific human rights record, Nasrin Alavi highlights the struggles inside Iran that deserve global support:

The Iranian state has to come to terms with the reality that, a generation after the revolution, no hardline Islamic student group is (or has been) able to gain control of any Iranian campus through free elections.

In the same week that Ahmadinejad was hailed as a hero of resistance in Lebanon, fellow inmates of the imprisoned human rights lawyer, Nasrin Sotoudeh, told of her nightly interrogation sessions and the screams that could be heard from her cell. We have also heard from the father of student Hamed Rouhinejad, who has related his desperate efforts to get guards at the same prison to take delivery of his son’s medication for multiple sclerosis, “begging them to keep it refrigerated so it doesn’t go off.”

When a loopy preacher in Florida threatened to burn the Koran, there were violent protests across the Arab world, but when pro-Ahmadinejad militia attacked the offices of Grand Ayatollah Saanei last June, leaving his books and tattered copies of the Koran in their wake, a deafening silence was heard from Iran’s neighbours. Had these events taken place in the occupied territories, I suspect the response would not have been so mute. Is this not the same gross hypocrisy and double standard that we in the region often accuse the west of?

Today Iranians who are standing up for their rights deserve to be acknowledged by their Arab neighbours. Their struggle is part of a long walk to freedom that began with the creation of the first elected parliament in the region in 1906. By 1911 authoritarian rule was implemented as Britain and imperial Russia strangled the early aspirations of Iranians for democratic change. A generation later, the democratically elected government of Mossadegh was finished off in a coup backed by Britain and the US.

Whether in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia or Iran, we are all familiar with pitiful old men who sit blaming and cursing the ghosts of a colonial past. These men are forever warning us of the enemies in the shadows who will conspire and thwart our every move.

But Iran is a country of the young, where two out of every three people you see on the streets are likely to be under 30. It is also the only country in the middle east where people can’t blame corruption, tyranny or even their daily hardship on their American-backed leaders.

We buried our colonial parents during the 1979 revolution. Today, the children of that revolution are banishing the ghosts that debilitated their forefathers by demanding that we hold ourselves accountable—both for our failures and for our successes.

4 comments ↪
  • brian

    No anthony, Chavez is quite right to embrace Ahmadinejad…The palestinians certainly do.

     

    '

    Iran's President easily connects with young people and is unquestionably committed to the full right of refugees return to their country. In a side meeting with representatives of the refugees camps community and some of their allies, Iran's President could not have been more emphatic and clear about this. Included in his counsel to young Palestinians during his visit were the following:

    “Stay in school and help care for all members of your family. It is you who will join the villagers of south Lebanon and liberate Palestine. People like you make revolutions”;

    Do not become discouraged by what might appear to be a bleak period in occupied Palestine and in Lebanon's camps. Ignore those who say the Palestinian revolution belongs to the past.

    Palestine will be liberated. It is a scientific certainly that this criminal occupation will end and that all Palestinian refugees in Lebanon will be able to go back to their ancestral lands

    The splintering of the Palestinian body politic has been caused largely from external forces but increasingly with internal dimensions that must be resisted;

    It is the duty of the international community to help you secure basic rights in Lebanon until your certain return to Palestine. Iran is prepared to fulfill its duty in this regard;

    · “Lebanon is the focus point of the resistance and standing against occupiers and oppressors and is playing an excellent role";

    · “Your return to Palestine may happen sooner than you think and is only a matter of time and perhaps the coming war will achieve this”;

    Mohammad, a young Palestinian dentist allowed only to practice inside Shatila Camp due to Lebanon's discriminatory labor laws explained: “President Ahmadinejad has been a hero to many of us here in the camps since he first became President of Iran. Unlike most Arab leaders, he is committed to the liberation of Palestine as if he were himself a Palestinian. He encourages us and speaks like our leaders used to speak before they seem to have given up our national struggle. If fact, he is more Palestinian than many Palestinians I know. We trust him and feel we have someone to support and protect us. Like Hassan Nassrallah he has bolstered our confidence to struggle to return to Palestine. Both of these great men are like uncles to the Palestinian generation now becoming adults.
    http://www.countercurrents.org/lamb211010.htm
     

    Do you really think the Tehran elite who hate Ahmadinejad would aid the palestinians? Think again. Get them into power and the US will be back in Tehran, and you will here some refal screams frlom new Guantanamos.

    You show some seriously bad judgement, esp in your efforts to demonise Ahmadinejad.

    ', Nasrin Sotoudeh, told of her nightly interrogation sessions and the screams that could be heard from her cell.'

    Screams?! really! this is the sort of tactic id expect from the zionist lobby!

    Do you think your faux torturer would bother to go to the aid of the palestinians?

  • brian

    It will be interesting to see if my comments get posted. Meanwhile the hysterical claims in the post , where i find words like, 'utterly ignores Tehran’s horrific human rights record' (horrific?!) and, ' told of her nightly interrogation sessions and the screams that could be heard from her cell.'

    and

    'doring crowds happy to turn a blind eye to his government’s brutality.'

    are what id expect from the zionist lobbys disinfo section. So what as this to do with president Ahmadinejad? who we are also told has no real power, yet the above article links Ahmadinejads name with the words: horrifixc, brutality, screams…

     

    Excuse me?!

    'But Iran is a country of the young, where two out of every three people you see on the streets are likely to be under 30. It is also the only country in the middle east where people can’t blame corruption, tyranny or even their daily hardship on their American-backed leaders'

     

    its also the country in which a majority of people voted FOR Ahmadinejad!
    http://gowans.wordpress.com/2009/06/16/iranian-el
    the alternative being Mousavi, a neoliberal who would love turn Iran back into  being a puppet of the US.
    http://axisoflogic.com/artman/publish/Article_560
    the fraud is in those who make it seem Ahmadinejda did not win
    http://www.infowars.com/bbc-caught-in-mass-public
    Its also a country whose present islamic regime is most certainly a child of the US removal of president Mossadegh, or where does she think the islamic reviolution sprang from?

    Iran is now the only country in the middle east NOT under US control.If Alavi her her way Iran would be one more satrap, ruled by tel aviv thru their proxies in Washington

  • Bahlool

    Fact is that Iran is hated by its arab neighbors, to think that they wouldnt take the opportunity to blame Iran for its problems or the burning of a Quran is just plain wrong.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7BPqxT7_gM4&fe

    the support for the revolution and its leaders is shown in this short newsclip.

    I think that Iran has problems, but to forget that a lot of the problems depend on the fact that the West have horrible embargos against the country have to be blamed.

  • Michele

    "Today Iranians who are standing up for their rights deserve to be acknowledged by their Arab neighbours. "

    Nasrin is right and this is good article about the struggle occurring in Iran today by it's young people.  Amadinejad is a petty tyrant whose ill gotten re-election was a fraud.