The Madison-Rafah Sister City Project

May 16-20, 2021
Virtual Delegation to Lifta: Commemorate the Nakba

With your guide Umar al-Ghubari

Eyewitness Palestine

To commemorate Nakba Day this year, we will be traveling virtually to Lifta to discuss the wider historical context of the Nakba. The story of Lifta is one example of about 600 Palestinian localities that were captured, and their indigenous residents expelled, during the Nakba (the Catastrophe) in 1948. Lifta was one of the biggest villages in al-Quds (Jerusalem) district until its occupation in 1948. All of its 3000 residents were forcibly displaced and, even until today, their ability to return to their houses and lands to live has been prevented by Israel. In this Virtual Delegation we will learn about the the life in Lifta before 1948, its occupation during 1948 and Israel’s restrictive policies afterward. We will start by the Palestinian school, which was “converted” to a Jewish orthodox one, and then walk among the ruins in the center of the village around the famous water spring of Lifta.

Umar al-Ghubari is a Palestinian group facilitator, a political educator and lecturer on Palestinian history, identity, the Nakba and return. He coordinates and guides “Nakba & Return Tours” at various destroyed Palestinian localities inside Israel and produce booklets on their history and current situation.

Umar works with Zochrot, an NGO based in Tel Aviv that formed in 2002 to promote acknowledgement and accountability for the ongoing injustices of the Nakba and the reconceptualization of the Return as the imperative redress of the Nakba.