On May 15, Palestinians and friends of Palestine across the U.S. and around the world commemorate the Nakba, the forced displacement of over 750,000 Palestinians and the colonization of 78 percent of Palestinian land by Zionist militias in 1947-48. These Palestinians were made refugees and they, along with their descendants, born refugees, have been denied their internationally-recognized right to return to their homes and lands in Palestine for over 71 years.
Al-Awda, the Palestine Right to Return Coalition, organizes to defend, protect and implement the right of return for over seven million Palestinian refugees arond the world. The right of return is the key to justice in Palestine, undoing apartheid, colonialism and Zionism. As we mark the 71st anniversary of Al-Nakba, we once again affirm that Palestinians have neither surrendered nor forgotten the right to return home.
Of course, the Nakba did not end in 1948. Settlement building, land confiscation, home demolitions, mass arrests, ongoing war on Gaza, confiscation of rights, new racist laws – all of these are part of the ongoing Nakba. So, too, is Donald Trump’s “deal of the century” and every other so-called “peace plan” based on the confiscation and negation of Palestinian rights and existence.
And just the same, Palestinian resistance to the Nakba has never stopped. This is well-reflected in Gaza. Despite the murder of hundreds of protesters by Israeli occupation forces – and the killing of over 30 Palestinians in just this month alone – in over a year of mass popular marches, Palestinians in Gaza continue their Great March of Return for their fundamental, individual and collective rights.
As we mark #Nakba71, we are more committed than ever, across generations and transcending national borders, to holding high the keys of return until we unlock the gates of justice.
We invite you to join us in building the movement for boycott, divestment and sanctions against Israel; organizing the Palestinian community; and building global solidarity and joint struggle for return and liberation. Contact us at email@example.com to let us know about your events and activities or if you’d like to ask Al-Awda to endorse or get involved.
Upcoming events of Al-Awda chapters include the following:
Thursday, May 23, in Lauderhill, Florida:
Commemorating 71 years of Nakba
5:30 pm, Baladna Restaurant, 4620 University Drive
Organized by Al-Awda South Florida, endorsed by SJP FIU, Dream Defenders, South Florida BDS
Thursday, May 23, in New York City:
The Right to Boycott: BDS and Your Civil Liberties
7:00 pm, Brooklyn Commons, 388 Atlantic Avenue
Organized by a wide coalition of organizations, including Al-Awda New York
On Tuesday, May 14, Al-Awda, the Palestine Right to Return Coalition, was one of the organizers of an event at UCLA, “Nakba Today: An Ongoing Process of Settler Colonialism,” featuring Dr. Rabab Abdulhadi and Dr. Linda Quiquivix.
Dr. Abdulhadi has come under a sustained assault from a variety of Zionist and right-wing organizations that are determined to attack her as a leading Palestinian scholar, as well as facing substantial discrimination at her own university. Al-Awda is a strong supporter of the Campaign to Defend Prof. Abdulhadi, and we encourage all supporters to get involved in the campaign or make a donation to support this important legal and political struggle to protect Palestinian scholarship on campus.
A full video of the event is available online. You can watch it here:
On Wednesday, May 15, Al-Awda New York joined Within Our Lifetime – United for Palestine and a number of other organizations for a commemoration of #Nakba71 in the heart of the Palestinian community in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn. The march was followed by Within Our Lifetime’s annual fundraising iftar dinner.