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.

Israel’s less than silent cleansing of Bedouins

Forget all the media babble about a “peace process” in the Middle East. It’s a distraction from the main game. US journalist Ben Ehrenreich, writer of the wonderful recent New York Times magazine cover story on non-violent Palestinian resistance in the West Bank, reports for the Los Angeles Review of Books:

It would be a long day. The drive from Jerusalem to Beersheba took two hours — longer, because by the time we arrived in that dusty, grimly sun-bleached desert city, Israeli police had already blocked all roads leading to the demonstration. A one-day strike had been called to protest the so-called Prawer Plan, which was approved by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s cabinet in 2011 and passed in its first run through the Knesset last month. The bill has to survive two more votes in the legislature, but if it does — and it is expected to — the law will forcibly displace tens of thousands of Palestinian Bedouin citizens of Israel from their officially “unrecognized” communities in the Negev desert, or the Naqab, as it is called in Arabic. Protests were planned in Yaffa, in Jerusalem, in Palestinian cities and towns all over the north of the country, as well as in Gaza and the West Bank, but Beersheba — think Riverside, without the glamour — was the site closest to the communities facing eviction, so we started there.

It was not yet 11 am and already over 90 degrees. We had missed the main demonstration, but perhaps 300 people, most of them students and residents of the imperiled villages, had stuck around. They stood huddled at the edge of the street beside a small and nearly shade-less park. Across the road was the campus of Ben Gurion University. The protesters clapped and chanted joyously. The several dozen green-bereted Israeli Border Police — six of them on horseback — who surrounded them seemed to only add to the crowd’s enthusiasm. “Take to the streets my people,” they chanted, “Free your land!” (It sounds a lot better in Arabic.) An old Bedouin woman standing no higher than my ribcage waved a Palestinian flag, her white headscarf almost transparent with sweat.

The horses charged, their riders swinging. The crowd scattered. Before it was over, 14 people had been arrested. The police handcuffed their captives to a fence on the median strip of the road facing the park. When a white van idled between the officers and the crowd on the sidewalk, I saw a flurry or elbows and fists through the windshield, and, when the van had pulled away, a young Palestinian stood hunched with his shirt half off. They shoved him into an unmarked Mazda and sped away. Another woman’s head was bloodied.

The police linked arms and pushed the remaining protesters some yards back from the street. It was okay — they could chant and clap there too, and did so, their high spirits unabated. Only now there were nearly as many police as demonstrators: the paramilitary Border Police, some armed with M-16s; grey-uniformed Yasam, or “counter-terror” units; and at least a dozen muscular men in dark tee shirts with pistols stuffed into their jeans. An armored white tanker truck arrived, a water cannon mounted on its cab.

When the tension had dipped and the police had begun rubbing their noses with sunscreen and passing each other bottles of water — it is Ramadan, so the protesters went without — I spoke with a young woman named Alia Saleen. She was from Al-Araqib, one of the 36 unrecognized villages targeted for demolition. Although it is entirely within the boundaries of Israel, Al-Araqib has no electricity, no running water, no sewage system, no infrastructure whatsoever. Its residents have been repeatedly expelled since 1951 — their homes demolished by Israeli security forces more than 50 times, Saleen said, since 2007. They now live in the village cemetery, the only place, she said, that the Israelis have not destroyed.

One of those demolitions, in 2010, came shortly after Netanyahu worried that the Negev might become “a region without a Jewish majority.” The Prawer Plan would provide the solution to this demographic emergency: the evacuation of the area’s non-Jewish residents. There is also, as it happens, money at stake. One day before the Monday protest, Netanyahu’s cabinet approved a $150 million development project for the Negev, part of a long-term plan to bring high-tech industry and ethnically approved suburban development to the southern desert. No one likes to see real estate go unsold. If it all goes through, Saleen and as many as 40,000 others will be relocated to all-Bedouin townships like the nearby city of Rahat, of which she said, “The place looks like a chicken coop. People don’t have space to live.”