Palestine Land Day promises 'This Year in Jerusalem', with Global March

Published March 28th, 2012 - 22:48 GMT

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Palestinian lady hugs tree
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Image 1 of 8: The day for Arab tree-huggers: The annually commemorated Palestinian-born 'Land Day' (not to be confused with Global Earth Day), is nearly upon us. Friday March 30th promises a planned 'March to Jerusalem', from Lebanon and the West Bank. In spite of warnings from the Israeli government to stay clear, the marchers plan to move full force ahead.

Protesting Palestinians
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Image 1 of 8: Protesting Palestinians: This day for the Palestine brigade is different from other days marked in the Palestine calendar. Due to the post-2011 charged climate of smoldering Arabs, this Land Day might be seized for protest with a (peaceful) vengeance. Last year's Nakba Day in the first leg of the revolutions was explosive.

Maroun al-Ras Lebanese border with Israel Nakba
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Image 1 of 8: Israel fears the Lebanon border more, as Syria is otherwise 'occupied' with its own insurgency.

IDF in a state of vigilance
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Image 1 of 8: The IDF is suffering pre-Event nerves, feeling 'guarded' about its borders. Usually vigilant the year-round, it has been nervous about its borders since the Arabs surrounding them 'sprung'. It has issued warning upon warning leading up to Friday's Land Day and will deploy riot control soldiers.

2 posters for Land Day: by Ismail Shammout
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Image 1 of 8: March 30 Palestine Land-Day posters, old and new. "The Day of the Land": This day stems from 1976 as an annual commemoration of six Arab deaths during a general strike and marches over land seizures which culminated in clashes with the Israeli offensive.

Jerusalem's famous sky line with Dome of Rock
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Image 1 of 8: The March on 'Jerusalem' may only reach so far as Tyre in Lebanon, as borders will be sealed off. 80 countries are to participate in the event, either surrounding Israel or local embassies. In the West Bank the activists will march from Jaffa, Al-Naqab, Kafr Kanna, Sakhnin, Deir Hanna. In Jordan, they'll be restricted to the Jordan Valley.

Ancient Castle in Deir Hanna, Galillee Triangle
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Image 1 of 8: Land Day started because of the Judaization of the Galilee plan. Lands were seized from the Galilee Triangle. Protests were organized in Arab towns from the Galilee to the Negev. “We will not forget Haifa, Acre, Jaffa, the Galilee Triangle, and the Negev” is one of the slogans of Land Day.

6 Martyrs killed in 1976
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Image 1 of 8: Six Palestinians were killed, around a hundred were injured, and scores of others arrested. But it was not the scale of the fatalities that has caused this day to go down in Palestinian history. The symbolic land-threat posed to Palestinian territory was cemented that day, and is still being pronounced in settler terms.

Palestinians wishing to return to their land-roots, and olive tree heritage, can celebrate Palestine Land Day. An unsung protest of the Palestinian cause is nearly upon us.  March 30 presents Palestine's Land Day - a day which has in the past been overlooked by more prominent calendar dates. But perhaps this year it will attract its share of attention, as Palestinians get riled up to make some peaceful protest! to mark the memory of confiscated lands and ongoing losses in 2012, in home and land-stakes. 

Marching for Milk and Honey Land

Activists have settled on a cohesive doubled-pronged  “Global March to Jerusalem” that essentially aims to reach Jerusalem from both Lebanon and West Bank borders. In theory, peaceful marches are scheduled to storm Israel's borders in Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria, throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and before Israeli embassies worldwide.

Propelled by their Arab brothers in strife in Syria to Egypt, they may want to grab some headlines and remind us that their struggle against Apartheid and Judaization of Jerusalem and beyond has only just started. 

Global March on Jerusalem

What's on the cards for Land Day 2012? The initiative most talked about is the GMJ - the Global  Marches to Jeruslam. Slogans and posters are promoting action for the day. And hiking boots!

“The march will demand freedom for Jerusalem and its people and to put an end to the Apartheid, ethnic cleansing and Judaisation policies affecting the people, land and sanctity of Jerusalem,”

“We aim to highlight the cause of Jerusalem (the City of Peace) which is considered the key to peace and war in the region and the world.

The Promised Land to get explosive?

Israel has geared up for the occasion of Palestinians attempting to march on Jeruslaem. The state has issued warnings - thus covering their backs - such that post Flotilla fatalities and Nakba Day chaos,  some expect violence to break out if the IDF deem the Palestinians as trouble-making against their advice. People, IDF not excepting, forecast that the hot spots could be Kalandia and Jeruslaem itself, where passions will be running high.

In reality, armchair activists may exceed any realistic marching facts on the ground. Or otherwise, it is predicted that West Bankers may not wish to jeopardize their relative safety and economic security of late.

A look at the plans for the day and the history of this commemoration in pictures.

What are your projections or expectations for Land Day 2012? Do you think the hype will have to succumb to the realities of well-guarded borders and people who do not want to risk their relative security?

 

 

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