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.

My name is the Australian Zionist lobby and I enjoy lying about Israeli history

Think about this for a moment. The average Australian citizen barely hears about the Zionist lobby except when it’s whinging about supposed anti-Semitism and suggesting an acclaimed British TV compares Jews to Nazis. The hyperbole of these Jews would be laughable if it didn’t seriously frame all us Jews as victims. And Israel, of course, is the eternal angel, bravely fighting for its existence by occupying Palestinians and using white phosphorous on civilians in Gaza. The Sydney Morning Herald today:

A leading Jewish body is seeking to halt promotion and DVD sales of SBS series The Promise, a drama set in Israel and the occupied territories that it likened to Nazi propaganda.

The Executive Council of Australian Jewry said the British-made drama, inspired by accounts of British soldiers who served in Palestine during the 1940s, was anti-Semitic and in direct violation of the SBS code covering prejudice, racism and discrimination.

The four-part series, which screened late last year, depicts a young British woman retracing the footsteps of her grandfather, a soldier in the final years of the British Mandate in Palestine.

In its 31-page complaint to the SBS ombudsman, the council said historical inaccuracies and ”consistently negative portrayals” of the central Jewish characters made the series comparable to the 1940 Nazi film Jud Suss.

It contended that identifiably Muslim characters would not be similarly portrayed by SBS.

In a letter to the broadcaster, the council’s executive director, Peter Wertheim, said the complaint also related to any marketing or sale of the DVD, which would be ”inappropriate” while the determination was pending.

The TV drama prompted a similar reaction following its screening in Britain last year. The UK’s Office of Communications received 44 complaints about the series, none of which were upheld.

In an online question-and-answer session after the final episode aired in Britain, its Jewish writer-director, Peter Kosminsky, said 80 British veterans had been interviewed during research for The Promise.

”If criticism of Israel becomes entirely synonymous with anti-Semitism, it becomes almost impossible to attempt any kind of reasoned analysis of what is clearly one of the saddest and most intractable conflicts facing the human race today,” he said.

The General Delegation of Palestine to Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific, which represents the Palestinian Authority, said the council’s complaint was ”an attempt to silence legitimate historical investigation, recollection and representation”.

An SBS spokeswoman said the broadcaster had received a high level of positive and negative viewer feedback on the series. She said that as the complaint was expected to be resolved before the February 8 DVD release, ”it is unnecessary to provide any undertaking regarding the DVD release”. ”SBS will assess its position in relation to the sale of DVDs once the complaint has been resolved,” she said.

Many letters have been written to SBS showing support for its decision to screen The Promise. Here are two selections (here and here).

28 comments ↪
  • ASL

    Yeah right, block the broadcast and stop DVD sales and that will really stop people watching it. It seems like the Executive Council of Australian Jewry need to catch up to that thing called the Internet.

  • Marilyn

    I already downloaded it and watched it again.

    Honestly sometimes the jewish lobby just need to stop their whining.

    It's not like we don't know the facts that they are now trying to cover up.

    I for one had a grandfather in Palestine for 3 years in WW11 and he told us stories of terrorist attacks on the Palestinians for years.

  • examinator

    As an Australian and a non Jew I believe that the Australian Zionist Club (what ever) is entitled to make what ever complaints like this they choose, as do any other MINORITY minority special interest group.
    The question I have in that perspective is 'so what?'

    In truth this special interest group(club) particularly noisy sub set Jews in Australia. It should be noted therefore their somewhat distorted does NOT represent the majority of Jews which are a minority of Australians in them selves.

    As the father of a Jewish daughter I am deeply concerned that the rat bag end of the Jewish community is getting disproportionally attention for their somewhat distorted views of what it means to be Jewish today.

    Like every country we all have events in our past, that we in current perspective aren't all that comfortable about. But to engage in active white washing of real events, in a third country's media is, not to put too fine a point of it a classic sign of zealotry and smacks of another agenda.

    What I find disturbing is two fold:
    first what is wrong with our media that they would play along with a group that even in their precious Israel ( a fantasy Israel of their making not the real warts and all one) they would be a minority that if it wasn't for their a quirk in that countries election system they would be all but ignored.

    Secondly their clear middle eastern political agenda is as I've stated before inconsistent with a primary concern for Jews in Australia that their God that the majority of Aussie Jews don't support their extremist views.

    PS fellas I think it's patently clear that your views aren't endearing you or your “cause” to the Aussies.
    We don't have laws, a court, or a secret service that has lost the plot and discriminates on religious grounds… show some common sense.

    And the media… Come on what a beat up! And you wonder why your market share is shrinking?

  • Marilyn

    Right on about the minority. There are less than 150,000 jews in Australia but they make more noise than the crowds at the cricket tests.

  • fairdinkum

    ASL – agree.
    Marilyn – did you grandfather tell you about the palestinians attacking the jews? Oh, maybe this has never happened, since your grandfather had never told you about that? Go to the Internet, as suggested by ASL. Or, for a change, read a book. You may find something new and interesting there…
    Examinator – what are you trying to say? Read your gibberish again…

    • examinator

      I agree my comment could have been better written. Although it's meaning is clearly decipherable.
      Having read you comments, I doubt that any form of words would be acceptable to you unless it agreed with your ….such is your bias.

      You maybe wise to comment, on what people actually say rather than invent concepts and put them into their mouths and then dissolve your credibility into a foetid puddle of ad homs.
      i.e. being critical (anti if you like) of current Israeli foreign policy/lack of human rights etc is neither Anti Israel/Anti Semitic or painting all Jews with the same brush.

      Then again we're all entitled to look foolish at times apparently especially you

      • fairdinkum

        There is nothing in my comments that is biased – I have simply commented (below) on, what I believe, are clealry anti-semitic remarks by Marilyn and Askey. Read their comments again and, if you are even slightly objective, you will understand my point. As I said very clearly, a criticism of Israeli policies is not necessarily antisemitc, but regretfully it usually brings up all that deeply entrenched antisemitism. The same applies to any other controversial debate involving any minorities that are surrounded by prejudice. For example, debating gay marriage leads to an aggressive and irrational anti-gay rhetoric within segments of the society. The same applies to the refugees branded as "queue jumpers" etc etc.
        So I believe I am objective and not biased. I'm certainly against censorship (with very few exceptions that do not include that mini-series), but I understand and sympathise with the views of the Jewish Council. You have to understand that their objection has less to do with the criticism of Israel, but rather with the wave of antisemitic responses, which is clearly displayed in the current blog.

        • examinator

          Unfortunately I disagree with you.I do understand their POV but I don't have to accept that it's valid let alone representative of most Jews today.
          Marilyn . Merely agreed that her grandfather reported atrocities how is that anti-Semitic …you assumed she was saying that there wasn't any arab atrocities ….*she didn't that was your projection that assumed anti Semitism*..
          Kevin& Marilyn merely amplified the reality, that this lobby is a minority of a minority… is a Fact or are you saying that pointing that out is inaccurate and therefore anti-Semitic ?
          Being a minority in a minority means, it is therefore bogus to assume they speak for Australian Jews.
          Additionally I wondered why the media paid so much attention to such a small minority….a beat up?
          You need to read *the context of the article* more carefully.
          Perhaps you don't see your comments as ad homs and bias….in which case you are simply unable to analyse logically… I'm sorry (I guess?) for misunderstanding the you misunderstood the article and the comments.

  • kevinherbert1

    Good point re the reprresentation of Jews in Australia, by examinator.

    There is no such thing in Australia as a group called "The Jews", in the same way that there's no such thing as a group called "The Catholics", or "The Muslims" etc etc.

    ECAJ speak for Australia's loony far right Zionists. Wertheim et al, are a standing joke to the majority of the Aussie Jewish community. ..just like Vic Ahladieff & those Zionist fools he represents.

    Same goes for Alby Dadon and his Australia/Israel friendship group…brought to you by the Besson family..representing…the Besson family.

    The collective "The Jews" moniker worked a treat for the disinformation re Israel PRIOR to the net….but now it's over rover……the truth is off & running.

    Thankfully, there are a majority of Jews in Oz who agree that the Palestinians need their own State at the 1967 borders……

  • Arthur Askey

    "In its 31-page com­plaint to the SBS om­buds­man…"

    31 pages? It's actually *ONLY* 21! Have a read for yourself. http://www.ecaj.org.au/news_files/120105_the_prom

    What the Jew lobby are complaining about are the portrayal of known historical facts, such as the Deir Yassin massacre. These are not complaints against racism or anti-Judaism, just an objection to the decades long misery of the Palestinians being accurately portrayed.

    Israel was built on the blood of massacred men, women and children form countess villages that were simply wiped of the map along with many of their occupants. That is a fact that Israel wants the world to simply ignore.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deir_Yassin_massacre
    Event's such as this occurred in hundreds of Arab villages, causing hundreds and thousands, then millions, of Palestinians to flee for their lives as dispossessed refugees.

    Jews need to stop denying basic history, facts and truth for the most shallow political purposes – Israeli nationalism, which is based on lies and propaganda of the most ridiculous sort.

  • fairdinkum

    Hmmm… interesting comments. So some of you, guys, are saying that the complaint is unjustified and that only complete lunatics and fanatics would equate anti-Israeli sentiments with the anti-semitism. Fair enough. I also think that to criticise Israel does not mean to be an anti-semite.
    But… there is one "but" in your hysteria, which is like any form of xenophobia is irrational (eg. anti-semitic, anti-muslim, anti-gay etc). You are all talking specifically about the jews. In other words, you are equating supporters of Israel with all the jews.
    For example:
    Marilyn said "There are less than 150,000 jews in Australia but they make more noise than the crowds at the cricket tests."
    Arthur Askey – "Jews need to stop denying basic history…"
    Marilyn and Arthur, you are anti-semites, virulent and psychotic anti-semites. You're covering it by your concern for the palestinians. Garbage! You and your kind will always find reasons to hate the jews – for their wealth, intelligence, big noses or the smell of garlic. You and your kind are disgusting.

  • Arthur Askey

    "Marilyn and Arthur, you are anti-semites, virulent and psychotic anti-semites….You and your kind are disgusting."

    You seem to object to the use of the word "Jews" in reference to the intolerance towards criticism of the self-declared Jewish state by "A lead­ing Jew­ish body" called "The Ex­ec­u­tive Coun­cil of Aus­tralian Jewry" . What is your problem? Are only Jews allowed allowed to use that word?

    Have you thought about arguing the points rather than resorting to ad hominem attacks? The only hate, which is the fuel of all racial discrimination, seems to be emanating from yourself. Less hate, more truth and understanding is what's needed. Ask yourself what and why these people lodged a complaint in the first place, and more importantly the reasons the complaint was rejected in both Australia and the UK.

    • fairdinkum

      "The only hate, which is the fuel of all racial discrimination, seems to be emanating from yourself." This doesn't make sense, as the only hate I expressed is towards anti-semitic remarks.

      "You seem to object to the use of the word "Jews" in reference to the intolerance towards criticism of the self-declared Jewish state by "A lead­ing Jew­ish body" called "The Ex­ec­u­tive Coun­cil of Aus­tralian Jewry. What is your problem? Are only Jews allowed allowed to use that word?".
      I do object to the use of "Jews" in reference to the organisation, because Jews also includes the author of this blog, authors and actors of the film, infants and senile jews, non-religious jews etc. The context in which you used this word has derogatory connotation, whether you meant it to be that way or not. If not, choose the words carefully, if yes nothing will change you.
      By the way, I don't care, why the council has lodged the complaint, and I do not support their decision to do so. Hence, no points to argue, and my response is just a reaction to some posts, which I felt were anti-semitic. I would react in the same way to any other anti-X'ism.

  • Marilyn

    WEll, why does a story about three sets of people have to continually lead to one group whining?

    I watched an interview last night with the maker of the film who was challenged about Deir Yassin and pointed out to the shills ( all 3 of them) that there were British soldiers there which is how he could report the facts.

    The series is 11 months old, it was made by jews, time the zionist nutbags here stopped their pathetic bleating.

    There are millions of us who are not jews who simply enjoyed the series.

    And fairdinkum, who hates the jews? Get a grip.

    • fairdinkum

      Marilyn, your own words are "There are less than 150,000 jews in Australia but THEY make more noise than the crowds at the cricket tests. "
      How should I interpret them? You did not say "zionists" or "Israel supporters". Why? Because you actually mean that all the jews are the same that they ALL make noise etc. This is anti-semitism. But by all means, give it a different name, if it makes you feel better.

      • Marilyn

        Arabs are semites too. Do dry up. I meant Jews, it is jews whining.

  • kevinherbert1

    Clearly fairdinkum didn't feel he had made any impression with his earlier post, so he reverted to type & poured forth on the old canard of the Jewish loony far right i.e. if you criticise any Jew you must hate all Jews, becuase you hate Jews etc etc …which in fact reads that Jews need to be hated by gentiles so they can use supposed racism (effectively branded as 'anti-semitism) as political leverage".

    Hmmmmm right back at you fairdinkum: methinks you're a classic version of a Jewish race supremacist, of the kind that has blackened the name of decent Jews globally for centuries. Racists like you fortunately make up only a very small percentage of Australia's fine Jewish community.

    • fairdinkum

      "…you're a classic version of a Jewish race supremacist…"
      What was racist in my comments?!
      Have a glass of scotch (or valium) and calm down…
      BTW, I'm not a Jew, but a sympathiser.

      • Marilyn

        Why? Explain why you are a sympathiser with the rogue state./

        • examinator

          Rogue state? Rogue government definitely.

          • fairdinkum

            "Arabs are semites too. Do dry up. I meant Jews, it is jews whining. "
            "…rogue state".
            As you can see, examinator, I was wrong. Marilyn is not an anti-semite. Just an anti-jew, that's all.

            In your own words "…Marilyn merely amplified the reality…". You might consider revisiting your previous opinion now.

            My initial opinion stays unchanged, because I can tell the difference between the "rogue government" and the "…jews whining" points of view: the former is a critique, the latter is racist.

      • Arthur Askey

        "BTW, I'm not a Jew, but a sympathiser."

        So, using your logic, can I take it that you also hate the Arabs?

      • kevinherbert1

        you just don't get it, and I doubt you ever will.

        You can't close down a debate with spurious acusations of racism, just becuase you don't like the points being made. By taking that stance, In effect, you're saying that those that have the gall to disagree with you must be racist..in other words, your views on race cannot be challenged: got it now? That's the AIPAC, ECAJ classic race supremacist position….now long past its use by date due to the arrival of the internet.

        • fairdinkum

          I don't accept the points that are racist, but acknowledge the existence of others. This is very clear from what I had said earlier.
          You, in turn, keep blowing the same trumpet over and over again: ECAJ and jewish supremacist, supremacists and ECAJ, and zionist loonies… You are so boring….

          • kevinherbert1

            Explain how they're not racist…I'm betting you won't/can't..

  • Arthur Askey

    Fairdinkum wants everyone to get bogged down in the semantics of Semitics so he/she can avoid addressing the perfectly valid issues raised.

    Semites are not a race, a religion or an ethnic designation. Check the dictionary.

    When anyone criticises Israel are they supposed to ignore the fact that the Government are Jews, who make laws that favour Jews in the Jewish state?

    Why should'nt Israelis and their Jewish supporters be called Jews? If non-Israeli Jews don't like Israel appropriating the word 'Jew; then why don't they speak up – oh yeah, I remember, they don't like being called 'self-hating Jews'.

    Generalising people and nations if very common and not clever but when it's done to the Jewish State, it's Jewish Government or it's Jewish population it's not generalising according to them, it's Nazi inspired genocidal racial hatred that must not be tolerated. Pathetic

  • rehmat2

    Israel is a land built on myths.
    http://rehmat1.wordpress.com/2010/08/03/israel-is

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