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.

Maintaining pressure on the autocratic thugs in Sri Lanka

I was honoured to be asked to sign the following statement released yesterday by Federal Greens MP Lee Rhiannon about the ongoing horrors in Sri Lanka:

Commenting on the arrival of Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa in Australia for CHOGM, Greens Senator Lee Rhiannon said: “Attorney General Robert McClelland’s decision to refuse permission for a criminal investigation of Mr Rajapaksa under the Commonwealth criminal code seriously tarnishes Australia’s human rights record.

“The Attorney General should have allowed this case to be tested in court,” Senator Rhiannon said.

“An investigation undertaken by a United Nations appointed panel found that up to 40,000 mainly Tamil civilians were killed in 2009 in the final months of the war.

“The same UN report found credible allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity which should be investigated.

“The failure of the Australian government to take strong action on the war crimes committed in the Sri Lankan civil war will undermine the Prime Minister’s push to reform Commonwealth institutions to encourage democracy and human rights.

“A broad alliance of Australians from across the political spectrum have joined together to call for a suspension from the Councils of the Commonwealth until the Sri Lankan government agree to an independent investigation into war crimes. (Full statement and names below).

“Julian Burnside QC, former Liberal Attorney General John Dowd and author Thomas Keneally signed onto this statement following a roundtable on Sri Lanka initiated by the Australian Greens.

“The Australian government should respond to this growing call for action by moving at the Perth meeting to ensure Sri Lanka does not host the 2013 CHOGM events.

“The Australian government is setting a dangerous precedent by rolling out the red carpet for Sri Lankan officials at CHOGM while allegations of war crimes remain unanswered.

“A report by the Eminent Persons Group has highlighted the failure of the Commonwealth to call countries to account for human rights violations.

“CHOGM is the time for the Commonwealth to show that the Sri Lankan government cannot escape unscathed against war crimes allegations,” Senator Rhiannon said.

Contact – 0487 350 880


We call on the Australian Government and the Federal Opposition to:

1. Support calls for Sri Lanka to be suspended from the Councils of the Commonwealth until the government of Sri Lanka agrees to an international independent investigation into war crimes, restoration of human rights and the rule of law and the implementation of all of the recommendations of the UN Expert Panel Report on War Crimes in Sri Lanka. Failing that event occurring within a reasonable time that steps be instituted to suspend Sri Lanka from the Commonwealth.

2. Oppose Sri Lanka hosting CHOGM in 2013.

We call on the Prime Minister Julia Gillard to follow the lead of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper in saying he will not attend CHOGM in Sri Lanka in 2013 if there is no progress in Sri Lanka’s human rights and the establishment of an independent investigation into war crimes.


Thomas Keneally, Author
Robert Stary, Lawyer
Hon John Dowd AO QC, President of the International Commission of Jurists Australia
Professor Noam Chomsky, Institute Professor (retired), Department of Linguistics and Philosophy, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston
Julian Burnside AO QC, Barrister and Human Rights Advocate
Bruce Haigh, retired diplomat, political commentator and adviser to the UK-based Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice
Senator Bob Brown, the leader of the Australian Greens and Greens Senator for NSW Lee Rhiannon
Phil Lynch, Executive Director of the Human Rights Law Centre
Emeritus Professor Stuart Rees, Director of the Sydney Peace Foundation and adviser to the UK-based Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice
Associate Professor Jake Lynch, Director of the Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, Sydney University and adviser to the UK-based Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice
Professor Damien Kingsbury, Director of the Centre for Citizenship, Development and Human Rights, Deakin University
Peter Arndt, Executive Officer of the Catholic Justice and Peace Commission Brisbane
Professor Ben Saul, Professor of International Law at The University of Sydney
Dan Patrushnko, President of NSW Young Lawyers
Dr Raj Rajeswaran, Chairman of the Australian Tamil Congress
Rev Dr. S.J.Emmanuel, President of the Global Tamil Forum
Professor Wendy Bacon, The University of Technology, Sydney
Antony Loewenstein, independent journalist and adviser to the UK-based Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice
Edward Mortimer, Chair of the Sri Lanka Campaign for Peace and Justice
Professor Chris Nash, Professor of Journalism, Monash University

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