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.

Why can’t we just leave glorious and triumphant Sri Lanka alone?

The world post 9/11 is polluted with “terrorism experts”, usually academics who love to be romanced by armies in the business of brutally killing declared “enemies”.

Rohan Gunaratna is intimate with the thugs in Colombo. In an interview with a Sri Lankan newspaper he offers advice for the government to avoid having to take accountability for the latest UN report on war crimes committed by the Rajapaksa regime and Tamil Tigers during the end of the civil war (though the Wall Street Journal, who never sees a counter-insurgency it doesn’t like, urges critics to focus less on the past and more on the present).

The interviewer is clearly only interested in hearing suggestions how Sri Lanka can ignore international opinion and Gunaratna is happy to oblige, painting a picture of a post-war nation that is simply untrue; Tamils are still treated like second-class citizens:

Q: The UN claims the panel of experts set up to advise Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on accountability issues with respect to the final stages of the conflict in Sri Lanka has found ‘credible reports of war crimes’ committed by both the Government and Tamil rebels. How valid are these assertions in your opinion?

The Sri Lankan government should respond, not react, to the panel report. This should be viewed as an opportunity for Sri Lanka to tell its side of the story. The UN Panel of Experts never visited Sri Lanka and interviewed the key players. For instance, the Panel should visit the centres rehabilitating former LTTE leaders and cadres, the unprecedented development in the north and the east devastated by 30 years of war, review the documentation on how government provided humanitarian assistance to the LTTE controlled areas, and interview the formation commanders that fought in the last war. The UN panel report is largely based on reporting by human rights, media, and international organizations heavily lobbied by the LTTE as well as front, cover and sympathetic organizations of the LTTE. For instance the Panel quotes from the Tamil Rehabilitation Organisation (TRO), a LTTE front group acknowledged by the international security and intelligence community as a principal provider of funds for LTTE procurement of arms, ammunition and explosives. While the Sri Lankan government lacking in public diplomacy failed to reflect the ground reality of the fight in the terminal phase (October 2008-May 2009), LTTE’s aggressive and selective reporting influenced human rights, media and international organizations.

In Iraq and Afghanistan where over a million civilians have been killed, there is no UN Panel advising the UN Secretary General to investigate war crimes. In May 2009, Sri Lanka was successful in dismantling the LTTE the battlefield but failed to counter the LTTE led misinformation and the disinformation campaign globally. Governments, International organizations and NGOs today react to lobbying and campaigning, a capability Sri Lanka needs to build and operationalize in the coming months and years.  The number one lesson from Sri Lanka for contemporary and future war fighters is that they must win both the battlefield and the information operation campaign.

Q: The UN statement issued on the release states that ‘The Secretary-General sincerely hopes that this advisory report will make a contribution to full accountability and justice so that the Sri Lankan Government and people will be able to proceed towards national reconciliation and peace.’ Given the long term repercussions of the report, how would you recommend the government’s respond to the contents of this report?

In addition to a point by point rebuttal of what is factually inaccurate, the Sri Lankan government should respond to the Panel report in many other ways. The outcome of such a Report signifies a massive failure on the part of the Sri Lankan government especially of the Ministry of External Affairs to respond to a new type of threat.

The Sri Lanka government should produce a White Paper detailing what happened in the terminal phase of the battle and recommendations to ensure that Sri Lanka will remain stable and peaceful. The White Paper should also list what government has done since May 2009 to build reconciliation between the different communities, rehabilitation efforts to give a second life to LTTE leaders and cadres, and the unprecedented development in the north and the east. Sri Lanka must highlight that not a single terrorist incident has occurred in the country since the LTTE was dismantled and all communities in Sri Lanka now live in peace and harmony.

Q: The panel in its recommendations calls for ‘initiating an effective accountability process beginning with genuine investigations’. How far do you believe the government should go in heeding these recommendations?

The Sri Lankan government routinely investigates allegations of atrocities. Whenever there is a credible allegation, it is absolutely essential for the Sri Lankan criminal justice and prisons system to act.  If a soldier or an officer is found guilty, the state has the responsibility to punish that individual. However, there is a distinction between isolated acts of atrocities conducted by individual soldier and systematic war crimes conducted by an army. The UN Panel report alleges that there were war crimes committed by both the Sri Lankan military and by the LTTE. It is apparent that the LTTE had a policy of conducting massacres of border villages, bombings of public places and forced recruitment of children. Even during the IPKF period, the LTTE used hospitals as cover to attack Indian peacekeepers causing high fatalities and casualties among Indian soldiers. In defence, when the IPKF fired back, both LTTE cadres and civilians were killed. As a professional military trained by the US, UK, India and other countries, the Sri Lankan military did not systematically and deliberately kill or injure civilians. In contrast, the LTTE has been notorious for using human shields, human bombs and provoking retaliatory attacks. After penetrating a government declared zone for civilians, the LTTE deliberately hid behind a human wall and attacked causing suffering, injury, and death to both civilians and military personnel. Alleging that Sri Lankan security forces intentionally and wilfully targeted civilians stated by a UN panel of experts need careful study. Similar allegations by UN agencies, NGOs, and other bodies have been levelled against the armies of US, UK, Israel and other standing militaries fighting brutal insurgencies.

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