Land Day marks an important time to remember the history of Palestine and the relationship to the land. In 1976, protests against land confiscation by Israel turned deadly for six people. That’s why on March 30 every year, Palestinians commemorate the resistance of the nation and the significance of the land.
And this relationship to the land is so important on this day. So much of Palestinian life revolves around the land and what it produces.
The food on the table is dependent on what the season is. The colors and stitches of clothing is based on the surroundings. Activities and songs are created according to the geographical details of the land, from meanings of words, types of music, and the ways of singing.
Palestine might be small in size, but its vastness in nature, with its soil and richness of land, makes it massively special.
Many Palestinians grew up as farmers, and this tradition goes back for generations. For hundreds of years, farmers planted olives, figs, grapes, wheat, almonds, and plenty of other things. The land then and still now continues to be generous and plentiful. So, Land Day is an opportunity for Palestinians to remember this long history and commemorate the nation’s resilience.
This is a day when Palestinians plant trees. This tree can symbolize a number of things for those planting it. It can be for the love of land, for the love of a missed grandfather, or for the love of a friend in the diaspora who isn’t able to enter Palestine.
It’s also a day for family. Families and all their children take this day to plant a tree and picnic in their land.
And this connection to the land is so vital. Since many Palestinians own land, even a tiny piece of land, it symbolizes a deep history of existence and resistance.
Our friend Om Mhareb took us with her to visit her land. Even though she hasn’t visited this place for many years, she still remembers every inch of it by heart. Her land symbolizes this history of existence, and continues to be a representation of strength for her and for greater Palestine.
So this year on Land Day, take time to commemorate this history and resilience of Palestine and understand the deep importance this land has for each and every Palestinian.