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.

New tools of dissent in the internet age

The always provocative Evgeny Morozov writes in Foreign Policy about the politics and ethics of online dissent in the form of civil disobedience. What are the limits? And why is it so different from the real world?

This is the post-Wikileaks new paradigm:

First – and I briefly touched upon this subject in my previous post – some Internet experts fear that participating in DDoS attacks, even if one has morally justifiable reasons for doing so, might make DDoS a more acceptable form of silencing dissent. As such, anyone participating in DDoS – even if they have perfectly good reasons for doing so – should first consider the indirect consequences of popularizing DDoS as a tactic. (I have written about DDoS as a new censorship mechanism on numerous occasions – see, for example, the story of the Georgian blogger Cyxymu.)

Let’s leave philosophy aside for a moment and just use some common sense. Would we advise anyone participating in lunch-counter sit-ins during the civil rights era not to do it because it may popularize sit-ins as a tactic that might be abused by all sorts of crazy people and criminals? I don’t think so: just because one can organize a sit-in to block an entrance to the offices of ACLU to protest their defense of civil liberties would hardly be a factor in deciding whether to block an entrance to the offices of the Department of Defense to protest a war.

Why is DDoS different? Arguably, physical civil disobedience is often much easier to conduct than its virtual counterpart: having 100 people show up and block entrance to Amazon’s offices, on average, is far more effective than having the same 100 people launch DDoS attacks on its web-site. Sure, there are oddballs like Jester, who claims to have taken the entire WikiLeaks with a solo DoS attack; but such people are not exactly missing from the offline domain. Cindy Sheehan has been quite effective acting solo – is it a reason to impose a moratorium on acts of civil disobedience? I don’t think so.

I think that those who worry about the adverse effects of popularizing DDoS as a tactic misunderstand what civil disobedience is (moreover, I’m not sure they understand the distinction between its direct and indirect varieties). Civil disobedience involves breaches of law by definition; anyone lamenting the popularization of DDoS as a tactic is only lamenting the fact that those practicing it would violate the rule of law. But what such critics do not seem to understand is that for a breach of law to count as civil disobedience its perpetrators should be willing to accept the consequences, get arrested and serve jail time if this if what the law demands. Submitting oneself to the rule of law after breaching it is the compensatory act that makes such acts morally permissible.

hose who oppose DDoS on the grounds that it will popularize DDos as a tactic are essentially saying: don’t breach the rule of law because it would lead others to breach the rule of law. Note that such a position leaves no space to comment on whether the laws that are being breached are unjust to begin with or, in case the laws are, indeed, just, whether violating them may be a morally permissible way to right other wrongs (i.e. engage indirect civil disobedience).

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