See this page for links to articles on OpEdNEws that articulate both sides on the issues in the middle east. It is the goal of OpEdNews to air opinions from both sides to stretch the envelope of discussion and communication. Hate statements are not accepted. Discussions of issues and new ideas for solutions are encouraged. .On Jerusalem, 16th, August 2006
The Joint Advocacy Initiative of the East Jerusalem YMCA and YWCA of Palestine
Wrote that for more than a week, beginning July 11, 2006, the Israeli Army attacked and uprooted olive trees, destroyed homes and property in almost 7 acres of land that belongs to five different families.
The land was planted with 950 olive trees that were donated by more than 60 different organizations and individuals from various countries in the world through the Joint Advocacy Initiative Olive Tree Campaign.
The attack was reported by the Union of Agricultural Work Committees in Gaza, through which the olive trees were distributed to farmers
Why Should You Care?
One million trees and thousands of acres of farmland have been destroyed in the Palestinian Territories by the Israeli Occupation Army since the beginning of the Intifada in October 2000. As a part of this policy, nearly half a million olive trees have been uprooted (31.03.2005), and this destructive practice continues daily in the Occupied Territories . Some of the excuses given for the confiscation of Palestinian land and the uprooting of trees range from the expansion of Israeli settlements and their bypass roads to the building of the "Apartheid wall" which annexes 50% of the West Bank to Israel.
In spite of the destruction of the very foundations of their existence and in spite of the ever increasing violence in the Holy Land , most Palestinian women, men and children have not lost hope, and they are committed to rebuilding society and its structures without the use of violence. The East Jerusalem YMCA and YWCA of Palestine are in the forefront of this effort to KEEP HOPE ALIVE through projects like the Olive Tree Campaign, which aims at planting 50,000 olive trees in the very places where they have been uprooted and destroyed, or in areas where the fields are threatened by land confiscation.
Through the sponsorship of YMCAs and YWCAs, as well as churches and other groups and individuals around the world, olive tree planting will be a sign of solidarity that encourages Palestinians to keep their sense of hope alive, and to reaffirm their commitment to work constructively toward peace-building.
The Olive Tree: Symbol of Peace, Prosperity and Wisdom
In the whole of the Mediterranean Basin , the olive tree is an ancient source of basic livelihood and nutrition. Approximately 1000 square kilometer of land in the Palestinian Territories are planted with olive trees, compared to only 20 square kilometers in Israel . An average olive tree produces 9 kg of olives yielding 2 liters of oil which has many uses: food, sacramental oil, fuel or as ingredient of medical ointments. The olive tree is plain and frugal. It grows in poor soil and yields precious fruit. It can live for 800 to 1000 years. Together with the wine and the fig tree, the olive tree is a symbol of prosperity and happiness.
Learn how you can be a part of this internationally supported effort and receive a 100% Tax Deductible Donation through the 501 3-C Olive Trees Foundation for Peace on WAWA Homepage