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.

Who has really thought through the no-fly zone over Libya?

So the West is about to launch another war, this time against Libya. Who exactly is the West backing? Who are the rebels? What do they represent? Are we providing arms to groups who may turn against the Libyan people?

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Egypt is sending arms to the Libyan rebels, with US backing.

Intervention is a tough decision, to be sure. It’s impossible to view supposed Western care for Libya in the context of history and not see our constant support for Gaddafi’s brutality. Yes, Libyan rebels have been calling for help but our meddling in the Arab world has arguably only brought misery, occupation, dictatorship and death.

This move has an uncertain future and may not conclude in a nice and neat way imagined by its backers. UN Security Council backing for a no-fly zone is important – this isn’t a unilateral US decision – but it’s remarkable how little debate occurs when Western forces begin another war. Is this the CNN effect on foreign policy?

And the Libyans should be cynical, as this New York Times piece explains. Our moves have nothing to do with human rights and are all about “interests” and resources:

There once was no American institution more hostile to Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s pariah government than the Central Intelligence Agency, which had lost its deputy Beirut station chief when Libyan intelligence operatives blew up Pan Am Flight 103 above Scotland in 1988.

But with the Sept. 11 attacks came a new group of enemies. In recent years, the C.I.A. has been closely tethered to Colonel Qaddafi’s intelligence service as it hunts for information about operatives of Al Qaeda in North Africa.

Now, the uprising against the Libyan leader, along with the revolts that drove out the presidents of Tunisia and Egypt and threaten other rulers, have cast a harsh light on the cozy relationships between America’s intelligence agencies and autocratic, often brutal Arab governments. The C.I.A. faces questions about whether such ties blinded it to undercurrents of dissent and may now damage America’s standing with emerging democratic governments.

Top American officials say that the C.I.A.’s close ties to Libya brought important benefits: the dismantling of Colonel Qaddafi’s nascent nuclear weapons program, and a partnership to track terrorist cells in the country.

But Dennis C. Blair, the former top American intelligence official, said that while spy services in places like Libya and Egypt were cooperating with the United States against Al Qaeda, they were “aggressively and sometimes brutally suppressing dissent in their own countries.”

“Not only did these intelligence relationships interfere with our ability to understand opposition forces, but in the eyes of the citizens of those countries they often identified the United States with the tools of oppression,” said Mr. Blair, who served until last May as President Obama’s director of national intelligence. He added that the recent uprisings offer an opportunity to “align our intelligence relationships with our national values.”

The seeming collision of American interests was evident in 2009, when the State Department’s human rights report on Libya was a gruesome inventory of disappearances and torture. Months earlier, however, a diplomatic cable, obtained by WikiLeaks, called the Qaddafi government a “strong partner in the war against terrorism” and declared the relationship with Libya’s spy service “excellent.”

one comment ↪
  • rm

    I am quite sure that the CIA has thought through the no fly zone. The no fly zone was always just the pretext that the US could get the stupid UN to support. There was never any intention for a no fly zone. this is an all out assault on Libya that the US intends to pursue all the way to a regime change and occupation, although the occupation may be carried out by mercenaries from around the middle east and elements of the Eqyptian military, which the US owns completely.

    The US has no credibility. Why not a no fly zone over Israel during the murderous war against Gaza? Why not a no fly zone over the US because of the drone attacks on civilians in Pakistan, Somalia, Yeman and elsewhere? The US is brutal and murderous empire and it will bomb and invade all nations at will. No fly zones are just ways of giving the sychophantic media something to talk about.

    The proper context in which to see the current criminal war against Libya is Bush's executive order authorizing the CIA to begin operations in eighty nations that would lead to regime change. We are now seeing the fruits of one phase of that campaign.

    the NYT piece is just idiotic as usual. No one gives any credit to State Department Human Rights reports. they are politicized to the max. And Libya was not responsible for the bombing of Pan Am 103. Do some research here. The US driven case was based on fraud and perjury.