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.

Ellsberg talks about a country that wants to kill truth-tellers

Pentagon Papers leaker Daniel Ellsberg on America’s toxic political culture:

Well, as I listened to Attorney General Holder on your program just now, I realize that he’s in the same position of that Attorney General Mitchell was in 40 years ago with the Pentagon Papers when they came out. We have an act of free speech, of free press, of informing the public, an act in search of a crime, in search of a law that would call it criminal. No one had ever been prosecuted for what I had done then, revealing top secrets. There had been many leaks in the past, then as now, and no one had ever been prosecuted. I was the first. The act they found was the Espionage Act, which was passed in 1917, was never intended to work as an Official Secrets Act, as in England, which would criminalize any release of classified information. But they tried it on me. I was faced with a possible 115 years in prison, which is the kind of sentence they would love to hang on Bradley Manning, who is accused of being the leaker in this case. We don’t know if he was, but I’m going to give him credit for it, since I regard it as a very admirable act, for which I thank him at this time. And if he’s—if the credit is not due, it’s due to the source, whoever that was.

So, I think, actually, what this is about, to a large extent, is trying to, once again, to instate the Espionage Act as if it were an Official Secrets Act, use it to cut down, close off unauthorized disclosures to the American public from inside the government, and also to accompany that with a legislative move to supplement it with an act that is explicitly an Official Secrets Act, one that clearly Congress intends to criminalize any release of classified information, such as the one you were just quoting to—in Cancún. I was interested that the recent release—Amy, you must have been reading it, actually, unlike most people, and found something of note in the cables that were released by the New York Times, given to them by WikiLeaks, and eventually by the source, about what Bradley Manning is reported to have said, the U.S. throwing its weight around against the poor countries of the world to exploit their resources, something that he said he was determined to expose to the American people.

You are reminding us that it’s not only Republicans like Sarah Palin and others, and Peter King, who will be a high—have high position in the House in the next term, who are calling for this kind of thing. In my case—I’m sure, by the way, that if I released the Pentagon Papers today, the same rhetoric and the same calls would be made about me at this time, the same material, same instigations. I would be called not only a traitor, which I was then, which was false and slanderous, but I would be called a terrorist, as a matter of fact. Now, that’s the word today for someone who is beyond the pale of any rights, of any rights of citizenship or any human rights, someone who can be just dealt with summarily like that. The reason for calling for illegal shooting, which is an odd and unusual call, is, as I said at the beginning, because our legal system, with its glorious First Amendment, we don’t have a law that makes it clearly illegal to do what—the truth telling that WikiLeaks and New York Times and Julian Assange has done. Assange and Bradley Manning are no more terrorists than I am, and I’m not.

And that is a—it’s appalling that our conversation after 9/11, in the last ten years, has reached a point where what Nixon did to me covertly can now be called for and actually done openly and very specifically. Nixon brought a dozen Cuban American émigrés, Bay of Pigs veterans, up from Miami to at least beat me up. The words were “incapacitate Ellsberg totally,” which covers the word “kill,” which, as their prosecutor said to me at the time, these guys, who were CIA assets, they don’t use the word “kill.” They avoid it. They use words like “neutralize” and “eliminate” and “with extreme prejudice,” “terminate,” that sort of thing. They avoided the word “kill.” I notice that the change now is that not only is that, which was a covert action, which actually was critical in bringing Nixon down because it was recognized as not only illegal, but really against American values in a fundamental sense, that has now become something you can talk about quite openly. And even the President can refer to special operations teams worldwide whose work is to capture or kill. The word “kill” is no longer avoided in these circles, assassinating people who get in the way by telling the truth.

no comments – be the first ↪