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.

Default position of US media elite is to urge violence against everybody

The frequency with which supposedly respectable mainstream commentators write about violence and killing civilians is handily compiled by Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting.

Remind me why these cretins continue to be published? Because they beautifully serve US foreign policy:

The discussion of violent and paranoid rhetoric in the media is long overdue, whether or not it is ever determined that accused Tucson shooter Jared Lee Loughner was somehow influenced or motivated by such rhetoric. Before the shooting, there had been a remarkable surge of politically motivated violence (FAIR Blog, 1/12/11). Despite media efforts to suggest this is a problem coming from “both sides” (FAIR Blog, 1/10/11), any disinterested analysis would conclude that the rhetoric coming from the right is both far more virulent and is given a much higher profile by nationally syndicated talk radio and the Fox News Channel.

But any discussion of media support for violence should not exclude other examples, many of which emanate from respectable, mainstream figures in the corporate media. The difference is that, in most cases, they are supporting or calling for state violence, usually against citizens of weaker countries who cannot, in most cases, defend themselves. This kind of rhetoric rarely elicits calls for greater “civility” in our public discourse, which suggests that some calls for violence are considered more acceptable than others.

A sampling:

Washington Post columnist Charles Krauthammer (12/3/10) on WikiLeaks‘ Julian Assange:

“Think creatively. The WikiLeaks document dump is sabotage, however quaint that term may seem…. Franklin Roosevelt had German saboteurs tried by military tribunal and shot. Assange has done more damage to the United States than all six of those Germans combined.”

“Want to prevent this from happening again? Let the world see a man who can’t sleep in the same bed on consecutive nights, who fears the long arm of American justice. I’m not advocating that we bring out of retirement the KGB proxy who, on a London street, killed a Bulgarian dissident with a poisoned umbrella tip. But it would be nice if people like Assange were made to worry every time they go out in the rain.”

–The Washington Post‘s David Broder (10/31/10) recommended threatening war with Iran as an economic and domestic political strategy:

“With strong Republican support in Congress for challenging Iran’s ambition to become a nuclear power, he can spend much of 2011 and 2012 orchestrating a showdown with the mullahs. This will help him politically because the opposition party will be urging him on. And as tensions rise and we accelerate preparations for war, the economy will improve.

I am not suggesting, of course, that the president incite a war to get reelected. But the nation will rally around Obama because Iran is the greatest threat to the world in the young century. If he can confront this threat and contain Iran’s nuclear ambitions, he will have made the world safer and may be regarded as one of the most successful presidents in history.”

New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman (1/14/09) endorsed the killing of civilians as a military tactic:

“Israel’s counterstrategy was to use its air force to pummel Hezbollah and, while not directly targeting the Lebanese civilians with whom Hezbollah was intertwined, to inflict substantial property damage and collateral casualties on Lebanon at large. It was not pretty, but it was logical. Israel basically said that when dealing with a nonstate actor, Hezbollah, nested among civilians, the only long-term source of deterrence was to exact enough pain on the civilians–the families and employers of the militants–to restrain Hezbollah in the future.”

–Former ABC anchor Ted Koppel, writing in the New York Times (10/2/06), argued that various hypothetical attacks should move the United States to attack Iran, whether or not they were responsible:

“But this should also be made clear to Tehran: If a dirty bomb explodes in Milwaukee, or some other nuclear device detonates in Baltimore or Wichita, if Israel or Egypt or Saudi Arabia should fall victim to a nuclear ‘accident,’ Iran should understand that the United States government will not search around for the perpetrator. The return address will be predetermined, and it will be somewhere in Iran.”

Fox News Channel‘s Bill O’Reilly (3/26/03) called for the destruction of Baghdad, a city of 4.5 million residents :

“There is a school of thought that says we should have given the citizens of Baghdad 48 hours to get out of Dodge by dropping leaflets and going with the AM radios and all that. Forty-eight hours, you’ve got to get out of there, and flatten the place. Then the war would be over. We could have done that in two days…. You flatten Baghdad, you flatten all the troops, we know where they go, there’s nowhere to hide in the desert. We know where everybody’s moving. And you know as well as I do, this war could have been over in two days…. It’s just frustrating for everybody to know that we have been fighting this war with one hand behind our back.”

–O’Reilly (9/17/01) recommended strikes on a variety of targets after the 9/11 attacks. After calling for the U.S. to “bomb the Afghan infrastructure to rubble–the airport, the power plants, their water facilities, and the roads,” O’Reilly went on to say:

“This is a very primitive country. And taking out their ability to exist day to day will not be hard. Remember, the people of any country are ultimately responsible for the government they have. The Germans were responsible for Hitler. The Afghans are responsible for the Taliban. We should not target civilians. But if they don’t rise up against this criminal government, they starve, period.”

O’Reilly added that in Iraq, “their infrastructure must be destroyed and the population made to endure yet another round of intense pain…. Maybe then the people there will finally overthrow Saddam.” If Libya’s Moammar Khadafy does not relinquish power and go into exile, “we bomb his oil facilities, all of them. And we mine the harbor in Tripoli. Nothing goes in, nothing goes out. We also destroy all the airports in Libya. Let them eat sand.”

–O’Reilly (4/26/99) advocated attacks on Serbian infrastructure:

“If NATO is not able to wear down this Milosevic in the next few weeks, I believe that we have to go in there and drop leaflets on Belgrade and other cities and say, ‘Listen, you guys have got to move because we’re now going to come in and we’re going to just level your country. The whole infrastructure is going.’

“Rather than put ground forces at risk where we’re going to see 5,000 Americans dead, I would rather destroy their infrastructure, totally destroy it. Any target is OK. I’d warn the people, just as we did with Japan, that it’s coming, you’ve got to get out of there, OK, but I would level that country so that there would be nothing moving–no cars, no trains, nothing.”

–The Washington Post‘s Krauthammer (4/8/99) criticized the “excruciating selectivity” of NATO’s bombing raids in Serbia and applauded the fact that “finally they are hitting targets–power plants, fuel depots, bridges, airports, television transmitters–that may indeed kill the enemy and civilians nearby.”

–The New York Times‘ Friedman (4/6/99) recommended that NATO airstrikes against Serbia cause more suffering, since “people tend to change their minds and adjust their goals as they see the price they are paying mount. Twelve days of surgical bombing was never going to turn Serbia around. Let’s see what 12 weeks of less than surgical bombing does. Give war a chance.”

Friedman wrote a few weeks later (4/23/99):

“Let’s at least have a real air war. The idea that people are still holding rock concerts in Belgrade, or going out for Sunday merry-go-round rides, while their fellow Serbs are ‘cleansing’ Kosovo, is outrageous. It should be lights out in Belgrade: Every power grid, water pipe, bridge, road and war-related factory has to be targeted.”

–Friedman (1/19/99) recommended the U.S. bomb Iraqi infrastructure: “Blow up a different power station in Iraq every week, so no one knows when the lights will go off or who’s in charge.”

A year earlier, Friedman (1/31/98) recommended “bombing Iraq, over and over and over again…. We may have no choice but to go down this road. Once we do, however, we better have the stomach to stay the course.”

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