Below are key calendar dates in March related to Canada and the Middle East, especially Palestinian activism and resistance. Please email [email protected] if you would like to suggest other anniversaries or dates for our "On this day" commemorations.
On this day in 1950, the Israeli Knesset enacted the Absentee Property Law, which expropriated the land and property of Palestinians who fled their homes during the Nakba in 1948. The law declared that any Palestinians who had been away from their land during the war (even if they were seeking refuge in a neighbouring town) were considered “absentees” and lost all rights and ownership to it. This consequentially led Israel to demolish hundreds of thousands of Palestinian homes... (Read More)
On this day in 2003, Rachel Corrie, a 23-year-old American student, was crushed and killed by an Israeli bulldozer while trying to prevent Israeli forces from demolishing a Palestinian home in Gaza. The cause of her death was immediately ruled out as an accident by Israeli authorities, who declined to undertake a full investigation. However, activists on the scene claimed that the incident was deliberate, and that Corrie was targeted for her solidarity work... (Read More)
On this day in 2011, the Israeli Knesset passed a controversial bill called the ‘Nakba Bill.’ This bill imposes financial sanctions on institutions that commemorate the Nakba, one of the most significant events in modern Palestinian history. Nakba means ‘catastrophe’ in Arabic, and refers to when more than 700,000 Palestinians were forced from their homes during the establishment of the state of Israel, as part of a process of ethnic cleansing... (Read More)
On this day in 2019, United States President Donald Trump signed an order recognizing the occupied Syrian Golan Heights as a part of Israel, defying international law. Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria during the 1967 war and annexed the territory in 1981. This act was never recognized by the international community, which considers the Golan Heights to be occupied territory. Trump’s order was perceived as a political gift to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, who unveiled a new illegal settlement in the territory named “Trump Heights”... (Read More)
On this day in 1976, Israel shot and killed six unarmed Palestinian citizens of Israel, who were participating in a massive demonstration against the Israeli government’s plans to expropriate thousands of dunams of land. The protests by Palestinian citizens of Israel – across the country in the Galilee, the Naqab, and Wadi Ara – were met with severe Israeli violence, injuring hundreds more... (Read More)