For hundreds of years, Palestinian farming families have cultivated groves of olive trees on the rocky terraces of the Cremisan Valley. This year will be the last.
Israel is solidifying its theft of Palestinian land near Bethlehem by building it’s apartheid wall around the Cremisan valley, forever cutting Palestinians off from their land and the prized groves of Beit Jala olives. One farmer, Ricardo Jaweejat, spoke to Al Jazeera about his connection to the land, “my great-great-great grandfather harvested this land, and every grandfather after that until my father and I…I just can’t imagine that this is it; we will lose this land for good.”
Olives are a critical part of the agricultural economy not just in the Cremisan Valley, but in all of Palestine. Yet, what makes the olive trees significant is not simply their economic role. Like culinary histories around the world, these harvests encapsulate multiple levels of significance. Food, in any form, is so much more than just the fuel our bodies need to survive — it is the physical manifestation of thousands of years of cultural and political choices that come together over space and time. Knowledge, practice, and history intersect at the sites where we produce and consume food, and the land that produces it physically ties us to these histories. From Beit Sahour to Khan Yunis, Palestinians have a long history of using food and agriculture as a way of resisting oppression.
Today, when you make a donation of $25 to strengthen the work of the US Campaign, we’ll plant an olive tree for a Palestinian farming family to support their efforts to remain steadfast on their land. If you can donate $100 to support our work, we’ll plant five trees.As you know, the majority of the US Campaign’s work is focused on changing the policy of the United States government and other institutions so Palestinian olive trees aren’t destroyed and stolen in the first place. But as we do that work, it’s also important that we support farming families whose livelihoods are being destroyed by the Israeli government on a daily basis.
Last year, generous supporters like you helped plant more than 1,200 trees through our Trees for Life program, bolstering farming communities’ ability to confront the ever-escalating attacks against Palestinian farming families. Once again, the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights is partnering with farmers on the ground and supporters like you to bolster agricultural resistance. Please support the work of the US Campaign and help Palestinian farming families by making a generous donation today.
These trees will contribute towards a sustainable income and livelihood for Palestinian farmers for years to come. Since we launched the program, we’ve planted over 9,000 trees because of gracious supporters like you.
Join us in supporting farming communities throughout Palestine today and we’ll send a commemorative certificate of your support to either you or the person who you are honoring!
Manager of Finance and Administration
P.S. — If you’re unable to donate, please consider purchasing Palestinian fair trade olive oil and other products from our store.