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.

The amazing struggles of Chen Guangcheng

A truly remarkable story that reads like a thriller but reveals a dark side of Chinese repression that we should never forget. The New York Times reports:

Injuries suffered in the course of a daring nighttime escape. A covert appeal from underground activists to top State Department officials for humanitarian protection. A car chase through the streets of Beijing to spirit a dissident to safety inside the fortified American Embassy.

Those are among the new details that emerged Wednesday from the 10-day saga of Chen Guangcheng, the blind rights lawyer who escaped house arrest in rural Shandong Province, and then, after managing to reach Beijing and come under American protection, was the subject of a series of highly unusual secret negotiations with the Chinese government.  

The story involved intrigue, heroics and ultimately what some of the people involved called a betrayal. And it is a tale, related by activists, friends of Mr. Chen’s and embassy officials, that so far does not have a clear ending, with Mr. Chen expressing new fears about his safety if he remains in China.

But regardless of the ultimate outcome, the tale of what happened to Mr. Chen and how he was handled by the Americans is likely to be remembered for years to come as one of the most dramatic episodes in the long, torturous history of relations between the United States and China.

 “Chen’s triumphant escape from his barbaric confinement is inspiring to all of us,” said Li Fangping, a lawyer who represented Mr. Chen during the trial in 2006 that led to more than four years of imprisonment on what he said were legally dubious charges. “Whatever the eventual outcome, it can only have a positive influence on China’s human rights situation.”

The seeds of Mr. Chen’s remarkable flight were planted months ago, friends and supporters said, when he and his wife began plotting his escape from the farmhouse where they had been confined since his release from jail in September 2010.

Although there were no legal charges pending against the couple, local officials had decided to turn their home into a makeshift prison with high walls, well-paid guards and sheets of metal to cover their windows.  The local government’s goal was twofold: to prevent Mr. Chen from engaging in his legal work against coercive family-planning policies and to keep the couple cut off from the outside world.

When the Chens broke the rules — by trying to sneak out messages or secretly detailing their mistreatment in a homemade video — they were viciously beaten.

As part of the plan, Mr. Chen feigned sickness for weeks, tricking his minders into thinking he was bedridden. Then, on a moonless night on April 22, he began his mad dash from Dongshigu village, heaving himself over the first of several walls while the guards slept. It was during the first few minutes of his scramble that Mr. Chen severely injured his foot. In all, he told friends he fell 200 times as he made his made his way to a predetermined pickup point.

Once there, he slid a battery into the cellphone he had in his pocket and called He Peirong, a former English teacher from the distant city of Nanjing. Ms. He was part of a loose network of freelance rights advocates who had been trying to draw attention to his plight for more than a year. She had tried in previous months to visit Mr. Chen and his wife several times. Each attempt was repelled by the guards at Dongshigu’s entry points. Sometimes they beat her, and on one occasion the men robbed her of her money and cellphone and then dumped her in a faraway field.

Civil disobedience, she had told friends, was having little impact.

With Mr. Chen in her car, a decision had to be made: try to surreptitiously leave the country through the help of Christian activists, or stay in an attempt to establish an independent life within China. “Chen made it clear that he had no interest in becoming an exile,” said Bob Fu, an exiled Chinese dissident whose organization, ChinaAid, has helped others make the overland escape. “He wanted to stay in China and try to make things better.”

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