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.

Washington’s global footprint is as subtle as the BFG

We often hear about the military industrial complex, but what does it mean in practice?

Exhibit number one:

The construction projects are sprouting like mushrooms: walled complexes, high-strength weapons vaults, and underground bunkers with command and control capacities — and they’re being planned and funded by a military force intent on embedding itself ever more deeply in the Middle East.

If Iran were building these facilities, it would be front-page news and American hawks would be talking war, but that country’s Revolutionary Guards aren’t behind this building boom, nor are the Syrians, Lebanon’s Hezbollah, or some set of al-Qaeda affiliates.  It’s the U.S. military that’s digging in, hardening, improving, and expanding its garrisons in and around the Persian Gulf at the very moment when it is officially in a draw-down phase in Iraq.

On August 31st, President Obama took to the airwaves to announce “the end of our combat mission in Iraq.”  This may, however, prove yet another “mission accomplished” moment.  After all, from the lack of a real Iraqi air force (other than the U.S. Air Force) to the fact that there are more American troops in that country today than were projected to be there in September 2003, many signs point in another direction.

In fact, within days of the president’s announcement it was reported that the U.S. military was pouring money into improving bases in Iraq and that advance elements of a combat-hardened armored cavalry regiment were being sent there in what was politely dubbed an “advise and assist” (rather than combat) role.  On September 13th, the New York Times described the type of operations that U.S. forces were actually involved in:

“During two days of combat in Diyala Province, American troops were armed with mortars, machine guns, and sniper rifles. Apache and Kiowa helicopters attacked insurgents with cannon and machine-gun fire, and F-16’s dropped 500-pound bombs.”

Even if the U.S. was forced to withdraw all its troops from Iraq, however, its military “footprint” in the Middle East would still be substantial enough to rankle opponents of an armed American presence in the region and be a drain on U.S. taxpayers who continue to fund America’s “empire of bases.”  As has been true in recent years, the latest U.S. military documents indicate that base expansion and upgrades are the order of the day for America’s little-mentioned garrisons in the nations around Iraq.

One thing is, by now, clear: whatever transpires in Iraq, the U.S. military presence in the Persian Gulf and surrounding environs will be formidable well into the future.

2 comments ↪
  • Mallee

    It is all going according the the US plan of conquest with lap dog Australia in on any necesarry killing of dissent with the lives of our soldiers, all based on the 9/11 official lies, the wmd lies and the continuing 'set ups' of false falg attacks, such as the crutch bomber on Christmas day.

    [search; "General wesley Clarke 2007 interview, '7 countries in 5 years' ".

    Napoleon, Alexander the Great, Ghengis Khan, Uncle Adolf, Japan's Hirohito and the rest of history's conquerers and would be conquerers would be proud.

    Murderous conquest; was carried out against the Indians, the Aborigines, the Aztecs, now in progress against the Palestinians  and every other defenceless lot in history.

    Makes us proud to be Aussies: don't it, Johnie, Kevin, Julia and Tony with the rest of our 'made of steel' politicians.

    Yep, no morality, no conscience, no heart, no blood, no bones, no brain just pure cold steel like the medal given to Johnie by george Bush. The 'Medal of Freedom' no less. I suppose Johnie polishes it every day, at least he is excused from having to appear at the funerals for our fallen soldiers and be on TV.

  • Persian Advocate

    Ant, sorry, not related: you might have seen this already. Steve Rosen filed defamation suit against AIPAC in March 2009. AIPAC now filed a 265 page motion to attempt to dismiss it because the discovery process would illuminate 50+ years of illegal lobbying practices and espionage, but had to admit to quite a few things in order to do it. The translation from civil defamation proceedings to a criminal arena is where the real battle is. AIPAC usually ends it there. Here, we have AIPAC infighting. It's all on antiwar http://original.antiwar.com/smith-grant/2010/11/1
    Several party admissions and admissions against interest there should this turn into an AIPAC indictment for violating several laws related to national security. Analysts surmise that if AIPAC manages to pay Rosen hush money, the damage has already been done: it will be seen as a confession to the fact that AIPAC is really a part of Israel's foreign intelligence ministry. Who knows what die-hard loyalties will be undone with these revelations, particularly from those who were convinced Israel was a trusted ally.

    If mainstream doesn't pick this up, I think I might start a social media crusade with as many friends as I can find.

    -Nick