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.

Read this for possible Middle East near future (and it ain’t pretty)

This email was forwarded by Harvard Middle East expert Sara Roy. No real comment required:

I pass this along without making any claims to verify its accuracy.  From a NYC-based Israeli source, who just returned from Tel Aviv, where he met with senior IDF and Likud figures, including Netanyahu.  He is one of the Likud “princes” whose father was one of Menachim Begin’s closest personal friends.  He is very close with Benny Begin.

During a one week recent stay in Israel, he conferred with a military grouping that he is a part of.  They are generally opposed to the Iran war adventure and have a very active position within the current IDF hierarchy.  The incoming IDF chief of staff, Gen. Galant, is a very independent-minded soldier, with his own strong views on the folly of an Iran attack.  He is no pacifist.  He was in charge of the commando units that carried out the Gaza Flotilla operation.  He also ran a 16-man commando operation into southern Lebanon, tageting Hezbollah sites, which went afoul.  Hezbollah had the capacity to intercept transmissions from Israeli surveillance drones that were coordinating with the commando team, and Hezbollah was able to stage an ambush, that killed 16 members of the IDF team.  While the incident was totally hushed up, there is a serious IDF internal probe underway into the failed mission.   Despite these setbacks, Galant was made the new COS of the IDF.

There is a serious conflict between MOD Barak and the outgoing COS Ashkenazi, over the way that Barak handled his replacement, appointing Galant months before the February 2011 turnover.  Now, the Knesset has shortened the wait time before a retired IDF general can enter politics, from three years to 18 months.  Ashkenazi is already planning a challenge to Barak for the chairmanship of the Labor Party in the next election, and he will have a great deal of support in that effort.

Source had a meeting with Netanyahu, and came away concluding that he is completely irrational, and stubbornly refusing to listen to advice, even from Benny Begin.  Netanyahu is aware of the weakened political position of Obama, after the Nov. 2 midterm elections, and he plans to take advantage of this weakness to launch a hit against Iran.  He has solicited and won the backing of Sarcozy in this.  Bibi had several private meetings with Sarcozy.  Sarcozy has agreed to support Israel in an attack on Iran, and the recent Anglo-French military alliance, forged during Sarcozy’s recent visit to London, could be part of this French support for the Israeli attack on Iran.  Shades of Suez 1956?  An Israeli-French-British entente?   Sarcozy came to this arrangement with Netanyahu, in opposition to the European Union’s war-avoidance plans, which involve an approach to Iran, offering lucrative economic deals, if they freeze their nuclear program and remove the pretext for military action.  Germany has emerged as the leading channel for this approach to Iran, and Sarcozy, in part, is reacting against Merkel’s role in this EU effort.

The Israelis, during the Bush period, developed and partially tested a new bunker-buster weapon, which my source described as a “semi-nuke.”  This was tested in the past in Nevada and in South Africa, but it still is in the final testing phases, even though approximately 100 of these bombs have already been produced.  The concern is that the fallout is strictly contained, and this requires some further refining.  At least one of the Iranian sites targeted by Israeli planners is close enough to the Iraq border, that they are deeply concerned that no fallout crosses into areas where there are American forces.  F-22 fighter jets “loaned” to Israel by President Bush have now been taken back by Obama, and so the French will provide top of the line Mirage jets to Israel.   The French are also providing mid-air refueling for the dozen planes (backed by 250 aircraft altogether)  that will carry out the bombing raid.

U.S. intelligence is aware of this situation, and Gates is deeply concerned that the situation has slipped out of any U.S. controls, due to indecision by Obama.  This is a factor in Gates’ determination to leave the Administration before August 2011.

For Israeli war planners, the biggest fear in not whether the operation itself will succeed or fail.  The biggest concern is what will happen the day after.  It is already factored into the equation that there will be very strong reactions to such an Israeli attack.  The stock markets around the globe will crash, and other chaos could result.  Israel will be clearly blamed and even further ostracized for the attack.

Israel is well aware of the Iranian retaliatory capabilities through Hezbollah and Hamas.  They know that Iranian support for both groups has tripled in recent months.  The strike plan developed by Ashkenazi involves attacks on southern Lebanon and Gaza, as the planes take off for their targets inside Iran.

Israeli war planners are aware of, and are factoring in several other possibilities.  First, there is a belief that Syria could make a military move to take back the Golan Heights as Israeli forces are focused on these other targets.  There is also a possibility of a military coup in Egypt, to prevent the succession of President Mubarak’s son Gamal.  Egypt could move into certain areas of the Sinai still held by Israel.

Israel is also aware of the danger of Pakistani strikes against Israel, in retaliation for the bombing of Iran.  A French delegation is in Pakistan, in an effort to derail any Pakistani retaliation against Israel, which, of course, could involve the use of nuclear weapons, which would wipe Israel off the map.

Netanyahu does not have the support of even the Begin faction of Likud for this action.  And if the attack takes place after February, when Gen. Galant takes over as COS of the IDF, he will refuse.  Source suggests that Netanyahu has significant respect for Bill and Hillary Clinton, and they could possibly dissuade him from taking this reckless action.  There was last week an eight-and-a-half hour meeting between Bibi and Hillary, and when she came out she said, “We still don’t see eye-to-eye.”  The prospect of some kind of political deal or shakeup in Israel, in which Kadima could come into a grand secular coalition and kill this crazy war scheme, is not very real.  Source believes that Avigdor Lieberman has sufficient power to block any move to oust him.  He is too powerful to dump.  Benny Begin met with him at length to get him to tone down the rhetoric.  He was not particularly successful.  He has built up a tremendous power base among the one million-plus Russian emigre.

When might such an operation be launched?  My source believes that, if it does not happen before December 10, it will next be on the table for March or April 2011.  Netanyahu is considering, but has not finalized in his mind, to order strikes in late November 2010.  All IDF vacations have been suspended as of this week;  and IDF officers studying abroad have been summoned home temporarily.  The line circulating around is:  “No repeat of the Yom Kippur War when Israel was caught by surprise.”

2 comments ↪
  • Mallee

    Hey Julia Gillard, your mob reading this?

    Don't expect the Aussie soldiers to pay for that damm free lunch your lot had in Israel last year (or the year before) and for the next one soon.

    We are already paying for 9/11 through the US sub-prime scam used to launder $240 billion on 9/11 when the US 'stock' exchange was closed down to enable the wash. Those sub prime toxic assets were sold through Lehmans to our councils and generally through out Australia. Ask the Anglicans how much they have put into 9/11.

    Federal Parliamentarians: All of you better recognise that you have only one master and that is, us of OZ, and no one else.

  • Kevin Charles Herber

     

    It certainly makes for gripping reading.

    However, it would destabilise the Middle East to such an extent that Israel will have initiated its rapid slide towards self-destruction.

    The effect on global markets in the curent post GFC scenario would make whatever remains of Israel, & the already beleagured Zionists globally, persona non gratis for the next 5 decades.