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.

Palestinian rights barely exist for Australian politicians

It takes a certain kind of chutzpah for corporatised leaders to continue praising “democratic” Israel.

Today in the Australian parliament the following was put on the record.

Leader of the Opposition in the Senate (Liberal Senator Eric Abetz): To move—That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) its decision on 23 March 2011 to acknowledge that Israel is a legitimate and democratic state and a good friend of Australia and to denounce the Israeli boycott by Marrickville Council and condemn any expansion of it,

(ii) the response by the Leader of the Australian Greens, Senator Bob Brown, to this decision of the Senate, which
was to ask that the Australian Greens’ opposition to this motion be recorded,

(iii) subsequent statements by Senator Brown that it was a mistake for the New South Wales Greens to advocate this policy and that it was neither the Federal Greens, nor his policy to boycott Israel, and

(iv) Marrickville Council’s decision on 19 April 2011 to rescind its Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS)
policy against Israel;

(b) rejects the policy of the New South Wales Greens which calls on all Australians and the Australian Government to boycott Israeli goods, trading and military arrangements, and sporting, cultural and academic events;

(c) notes with concern:

(i) the resolution carried at the 2010 Regional Conference of the Queensland Branch of the Australian Labor Party (ALP) to support the BDS campaign against Israel,

(ii) initial support for the support for the BDS campaign against Israel by four Labor councillors on Marrickville

(iii) the decision by the New South Wales ALP to preference Greens candidate and Marrickville Mayor, Fiona
Byrne, in the seat of Marrickville at the New South Wales state election, and

(iv) reports that Mr David Forde, Convenor of Labor 4A Just Palestine, who supports the BDS campaign, is a
frontrunner for ALP preselection for the Queensland state seat of Stretton;

(d) denounces support lent to the BDS campaign against Israel by the: Victorian Trades Hall Council; Geelong
Trades Hall Council; Newcastle Trades Hall Council; South Coast Labour Council; Queensland Council of Unions; UnionsACT and branches of the Australian Services Union; Teachers’ Union; Liquor, Hospitality and
Miscellaneous Workers Union; Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union; Maritime Union of Australia;
Australian Manufacturing Workers Union; Communications, Electrical, Plumbing Union; Electrical Trades Union; Finance Sector Union; Health and Community Services Union; and Rail, Tram and Bus Union;

(e) calls on the Australian Council of Trade Unions to oppose this campaign; and

(f) in light of events and information available to the Senate since 23 March 2011, reaffirms its decision that Israel is a legitimate and democratic state and a good friend of Australia.



Notices for Wednesday, 11 May 2011

*1 MS Julie. BISHOP [Liberal MP]: To move—That this House:

(1) restates its support for the motion moved by the then Prime Minister and passed by this House on the sixtieth anniversary of the State of Israel, and in particular:

(a) acknowledges the unique relationship which exists between Australia and Israel, a bond highlighted by the commitment of both societies to the rights and liberty of our citizens and to cultural diversity;

(b) commends the State of Israel’s commitment to democracy, the rule of law and pluralism; and

(c) reiterates Australia’s commitment to Israel’s right to exist in peace and security, and our continued support for a peaceful two-state resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian issue; and

(2) notes with concern the fraying of the traditionally bipartisan support amongst Australia’s political parties for the State of Israel, and in particular the:

(a) resolution by Greens councillors on Marrickville Council for a boycott of Israel, supported by Labor councillors;

(b) policy adopted by the NSW Greens for an Israel boycott;

(c) decision by the NSW Labor Party to preference the Greens candidate for Marrickville ahead of other candidates who did not support an Israel boycott; and

(d) decision by Labor and Greens councillors on Moreland City Council, Melbourne, to allow the anti-semitic group Hizb ut-Tahrir to use Council premises in August 2010 despite

Hizb ut-Tahrir publicly calling for the slaughter of Jewish people, and its enthusiasm for Osama bin Laden. (Notice given 10 May 2011.)

Only craven politicians feel the need to continually praise a nation that occupies another people. What does it say that there are no mainstream politicians (apart from a few Greens) who oppose this slavishness?

Apartheid Israel continues on its merry way.

  • Thanks Antony, these words (which just about have been written for the Australian MPs by Mark Regev in Tel Aviv) must not go unchallenged: "… a bond highlighted by the commitment of both societies to the rights and liberty of our citizens and to cultural diversity".

    What? Israel committed to rights and liberty and cultural diversity? I was dumbfounded! They must have in mind the world's biggest outdoor prison in Gaza. Then the penny dropped, but of course, what Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd et al are doing is making Australia more and more like Israel. Now we get to understand Ms Gillard's (final) bottom of the South China Sea Solution and her grubby deal to trade asylum seekers with Malaysia. Just watch the Malaysian Navy sink boats and leave people to starve, as they have done numerous times.

    Now we understand this term 'cultural diversity' to be code for cutting funds to Aboriginal communities (especially when uranium miners are offering favours). I don't like the Hanson/Ruddock Australia I am seeing emerge out of all this.

  • Reality Check

    And yet Israel is infinitely more liberal, democratic, modern, progressive and respectable than Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Libya, Gaza/West Bank, Saudia Arabia, yemen, and all the other Arab/Muslim countries near it. Go figure.

    And Arab Israelis have more freedom and enjoy more success than Arabs who live in actual Arab countries. Go figure.

    It’s fun when “progressive peace activists” spend 99 percent of their life demonizing Israel instead of facing reality, which is that Israel, by far the best country in that entire region, is up against crazy people and has to deal accordingly.

  • efj

    These motions trash the integrity of Parliament in the most fundamental manner.
    Empirical falsehoods reified as immutable truths.
    The comprehensiveness of these items highlight that they have not come from Liberal Party administrators but from the Lobby.
    What next. Parliament affirms that the earth is flat, that the world was created in 4004BC, that the Holocaust against Jewry never happened?
    The baseness of it all is beyond belief.

  • Kevin Herbert

    Poor old Eric…he's always suffered from delusions of relevance. His egregious performance when questioning the immediate past Treasury Secretary will go down in Senate history as one of the worst cases of being totally out of one's depth in a public hearing.

    So the Libs have two of their D list reps in the Senate & the House of Reps stake out the claim for Israel as a true democracy.

    That should keep the US happy, and of course guarantee the flow of funds (both publicly & privately) into the Liberal Party's coffers.

    Regretably, it unjustifiably confers some kudos on those expert Aussie Zionist lobbyists like Albert 'Bombs" Dadon et al, who truly believe that their influence is what informs the Australian Government's views on Israel…talk about out of their depth.