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.

Disaster capitalists in Bougainville just want another shot at ruining the place

A foreign company destroys Bougainville in Papua New Guinea and leaves a trail of ecological destruction. Years after, the same company wants to re-open the same mine by whispering sweet nothings about its intentions. Dont believe a word.

Following my Crikey investigation last week, today sees an unintentionally funny response to the publication. Yes, vulture capitalists are crying poor and demanding a fair go. Having seen with my own eyes what they did last time in Bougainville, they quite simply can’t be trusted now:

Axel G. Sturm, Bougainville Copper, writes: Re. “How the ‘resource curse’ eats at the heart of Bougainville” (Friday, item 8). Unfortunately Antony Loewenstein missed a good chance to unmask the situation in Bougainville’s central region.

Unfortunately he seems to be more interested in describing people’s clothing than analysing their real problems: No word about the money paid in the past by BCL  that vanished in the pockets of dubious PNG businessmen and greedy politicians. No word about multiple criminal groups that — until today — try to enrich themselves and kill even children for that.

Only a few days ago PNG attitude published an article on that.

Our company, Bougainville Copper Limited, has been more or less a victim of local greed and brutality. But Loewenstein pretends to be an “independent journalist”. But in reality his work is superficial and extremely poor — unfortunately! His allegations that China could be a better adviser in independence than Australia is absolute nonsense.

I know very well that it is not easy to get a good overview on the complex situation on the ground. Therefore the European shareholders of Bougainville Copper provide the world’s biggest source for research on Bougainville  www.bougainville-copper.eu .

2 comments ↪
  • Thanks for quoting, Antony! I suppose you'll never be a good investigator but – if you try hard – a better propagandist.! Feel free to contact me on Skype! Or are you scared at the idea of contact?

  • examinator

    Axel,
    And your 'impeccably objective sources' are, someone who's father was killed in the battles way back and Keith Jackson's experience was when 1963- 76 as a journalist! Both non indigenous

    Flash sir, one's arguably got a chip, the other may as well be from outer space.
    – Jackson's a hired gun (PR) well inculcated in Western capitalism.
    – the currency of his experience is a 36 years ago .
    – As a white non indigenous Journalist back then he was seeking the sensation (news worthy) rather than a deep understanding of the indigenous.

    Frankly if Antony is ill informed or wears his heart on his sleeve then I fail to see that you, your slick advertising, a corporate hired gun are any more credible.
    If you have evidence of government malfeasance to wit the misappropriation of clean up funds . one is then entitled to ask;
    – why haven't you pushed the case through the appropriate authorities?
    – If the alleged corruption is that systemic why would you want to play in that quick sand pool again?
    – If you ignore the above malfeasance aren't you just as guilty.?
    It seems to me that your defence is very thin …. a mite hypocritical and very self interested.

    As for you trying to discredit the messenger rather than the message, that says more about you than him. Ad hominem attacks ? One would assumed that you were beyond such pedestrian diversionary tactics.

    I would suggest that your form of corporate capitalism is simply a mismatch with the culture of the indigenous people……A simply lack of understanding/ignoring their very different mind set (culture)…. Capitalism is about money not people and heaven forbid a 'lesser' philosophy of existence/identity.
    BTW I grew up in PNG and had protracted contact with the original discontented. As such it was easier for me to absorb their philosophies et al. Then again my experience while appears demonstrably closer to the indigenous reality than Mr Jackson's, it too has comparably aged.

    NB I'm not doubting that there is some truth in what you say regarding all things non Antony. But simply use your logic to point out you are in fact the kettle calling the pot Black.
    If Antony is biased under informed then you and your two are as well …..
    With all due respect to you, I would suggest that the problem is a bit more fundamental . I find that Capitalists in general don't understand the culture or their defining identity.
    That doesn't exclude the opportunist tribal thinking big man…but “war lord” is neither objective, helpful or strictly accurate. In short it's Um Propaganda.