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.

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.

What a spectacular own goal looks like; thank you Michael Danby for embracing Israeli occupation so cluelessly

Labor MP Michael Danby has a history of loving Israel as only a married man can. Today he unleashes his glorious literary skills in the Murdoch tabloids to denounce Foreign Minister Bob Carr for daring to have an independent thought over Israel:

As NSW premier he [Bob Carr] awarded the Sydney Peace Prize to Palestinian ideologue Hanan Ashrawi. As the only major figure in the Australian Jewish community to defend his actions, I used the Voltaire argument, namely his right to say things with which others disagreed.

After his departure as premier I didn’t pay much attention to Carr, except to lament to other Labor moderates around the country about the absence of beliefs in some NSW “comrades”.

There are clever and capable Labor figures in NSW, such as Paul Howes, Tony Burke, Chris Bowen and Luke Foley, but any examination of some state MPs shows a debilitating quality of most of the NSW Right in the post-Keating era.

Parliament last month saw a switch in Australia’s stance at the UN creation of a Palestinian state after Julia Gillard’s pro-Israel position was challenged and then overturned by Carr and others.

Yet when Carr was premier he would never have permitted treasurer Michael Egan ringing around trying to get the numbers to sell NSW power stations.

Such action would not have been tolerable – even if Egan was right. It is unacceptable in a cabinet for a minister to act – to use Gough Whitlam’s immortal description – like Tiberius on the telephone, organising numbers against his or her leader.

Some caucus members worry about every Palestinian – who is, by aid dollars per capita, the most highly subsidised minority in the world, including $350 million of Australian taxpayer funds.

By contrast, poor gentle Tibet gets little sympathy. More than 80 Tibetans have burned themselves to death in the past 18 months as a result of Chinese oppression.

Tibetans launch terrorist attacks on no one. They acquire no Iranian missiles to attack Chinese cities; they strap on no suicide vests to blow up no children on school buses.

Yet the Tibetans can’t get a meeting with our Foreign Minister and they don’t get a dollar from the UN.

We avert our eyes when a real power like China crushes under its boot an ancient people like the Tibetans. Yet our Foreign Minister asks of the Palestinian vote at the UN: “How will I explain this on the steps of the mosque at Lakemba?”

Everybody like that charming, implied racism directed at the Palestinians? They’re all terrorists, hadn’t you heard?

Carr responded strongly today on ABC Radio. His words speak for themselves:

TONY EASTLEY: The Labor backbencher Michael Danby has accused the Foreign Minister Bob Carr of orchestrating a rebellion against the Prime Minister over last month’s controversial vote on giving greater recognition to the Palestinian Territories at the United Nations.

Mr Danby has written an op-ed piece in today’s News Limited papers saying that Senator Carr used unacceptable tactics to phone Caucus colleagues to rally numbers against Ms Gillard’s position.

The Prime Minister had originally wanted to support Israel and the US position and vote against greater recognition.

But in the end Caucus prevailed and Australia abstained from the vote.

Senator Carr though has rejected the allegation that he ‘acted liked Tiberius’ to organise the numbers against his leader. 

The Foreign Minister is speaking here to our chief political correspondent Sabra Lane. 

SABRA LANE: Bob Carr, Michael Danby has accused you of behaving in an unacceptable manner and he’s used a Gough Whitlam phrase, ‘acting like Tiberius on the telephone’, organising the numbers against Julia Gillard. 

How do you respond?

BOB CARR: Well Michael Danby is a passionate supporter of Israel – Israel right or wrong. I describe Michael, who’s a great friend of mine, as being a stronger Labor Zionist than Ben Gurion, the founder of the state of Israel himself.

But my view as a friend of Israel is that we are doing nothing for Israel if we fail to register a criticism when Israel has got it wrong, as Israel has got it wrong on the remorseless spread of settlements on the West Bank – half a million settlers, new plans for Israeli settlements – that will make a two state solution all the harder. 

And it was that spirit that I think over 90 per cent of the party, the Cabinet, the Caucus subscribed to when it endorsed the approach we were taking at the UN on the vote on non-state status of Palestinians.

SABRA LANE: But it’s an extraordinary lashing of you. How do you respond to his attack? He’s accused you of behaving in an unacceptable manner.

BOB CARR: Well it’s just untrue. I mean Michael, as I said, has got passionate views that I respect. But I’ve got a very different concept of how a friend of Israel should behave.

SABRA LANE: But is it untrue? You did ring around and talk to Caucus and Cabinet colleagues on this issue.

BOB CARR: I made very few phone calls. Tiberius with his telephone on the Isle of Capri was much more active. 

SABRA LANE: Getting back to the points that Michael Danby made, he said that you would never have allowed your own deputy Michael Egan to have done a ring-around like this when you were the New South Wales premier. Would you have?

BOB CARR: I said earlier that Michael is simply wrong when he attributes to me that sort of active engagement. I thought it was extremely important that Australia abstain on this vote…

SABRA LANE: Why do you-

BOB CARR: ..instead of voting with a tiny minority of nations, failing to send a message to Israel about the spread of settlements and the awesome consequences that has got for negotiating a two state solution.

SABRA LANE: If Mr Danby got it so wrong, why has he gone to print in such a spectacular way to give you such a backhander this morning?

BOB CARR: I don’t think it was spectacular and I think, again, the starting point is that Michael’s approach, he is a passionate supporter of Israel, is that Australia must back Israel, right or wrong. 

I’m a friend of Israel but I’ve got a different approach and that is you’ve got to have a…

SABRA LANE: Specifically on his allegation levelled against you this morning that it was unacceptable behaviour for the Foreign Minister.

BOB CARR: His allegation is absolutely wrong. And I understand it in terms of his passionate position on Israel and the Middle East. But he’s got to understand this: The vast majority of his colleagues, like the vast majority of the Australian people, take a different view. And that is you will only have peace in the region if you have a two state solution and that is being rendered very difficult by the spread of settlements, including the settlements that were announced as a punishment it seems for Palestinians after the UN by that big majority, with Australia and 40 other countries including the United Kingdom abstaining, on Palestinian status. 

And you will never, you will never provide security for the state of Israel – which is something all friends of Israel, I’m included – want to see if you fail to deliver the Palestinian state. And the Palestinian state is threatened by the settlements like E1, which would end forever the prospect of a contiguous Palestinian territory. 


  • Kevin Herbert

    Michael Dumby is an easy target that's for sure.

    His stature within the Federal Labor ranks is such that he's not been appointed to any party position of note by the Gillard Government, notwithstanding the PM's Israel or bust stance.

    As I've said on many occasions directly to Dumby himself, the Hamas leadership is thankful for his contribution to their cause.

    • examinator

      Why attack the person (Ad hom)…attack what he says..
      He's not dumb ….I don't agree with him, I think his out bust is greatly conflated…he's simply lost an argument and it desperate to placate key elements in his electorate. In reality he knows his outburst has absolutely no impact to anybody but "the those who support Israel at any cost" in his electorate. While key to his election they are a minority. All over an 'abstention' to a token gesture.

      JG is probably more Pro USA and their wishes than the Pro Apartheid Israeli regime .

  • Ned

    Danby is a distraction, Frydenberg is coming up on the outside:

  • Kevin Herbert


    Frydbrainberg thinks he's PM material…but he's clearly not smart enough.

    His racist rave against Germans & Germany on last year's "let's milk the Genocide Day" was an alarming example of a bigot in full flight..of coiurse, only the Oz would print such tripe.