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Walid Daqqah: A Legacy of Resilience and Renewal

A Life Marked by Struggle and Survival

Walid Daqqah faced a life-altering challenge when diagnosed with Myelofibrosis in 2022, signaling what he knew would be his final years. Yet, unknown to many, this marked the beginning of a poignant new chapter in his life, one that extended beyond personal adversity. Two decades before, in an act of hopeful foresight, Walid had chosen the name Milad, meaning “birth” in Arabic, for his future daughter, envisioning a legacy that would continue beyond his own timeline.

Milad: A Symbol of National Identity

Born in 2020, Milad Walid Daqqah quickly became a figure of national interest in Palestine, with her every milestone celebrated and her life keenly followed on social media by many. Through her, the public saw not just the innocence of childhood but a living testament to the Palestinian spirit of endurance amidst ongoing challenges. Her very existence became a symbol, a window to the persistent realities faced by her father, encapsulating the struggle of life under occupation—a narrative deeply rooted in the Palestinian experience.

The Enduring Battle for Dignity and Justice

Walid’s passing in April 2024 at an Israeli hospital, amid conditions of severe restriction and alleged medical negligence, sparked widespread outcry. The denial of traditional mourning practices by Israeli authorities only intensified the perception of injustice surrounding his death. Throughout his life, from his early years in Baqa al-Gharbiyah under military rule to his decades of imprisonment, Walid’s journey was emblematic of a broader Palestinian narrative of resistance and resilience.

Intellectual Legacy and Political Engagement

Despite the harsh realities of prison life, Walid transformed his incarceration into a period of prolific intellectual and creative output. He completed advanced degrees and authored works that contributed significantly to Palestinian cultural and political discourse. His engagement in politics, particularly through the Democratic National Assembly, underscored his commitment to influencing the socio-political landscape, advocating for the rights and recognition of Palestinians both within and beyond the prison walls.

The Symbolism of Walid’s Life and Milad’s Birth

The story of Walid Daqqah and his daughter Milad encapsulates a profound narrative of resistance, renewal, and hope. Walid’s life, divided between his years as a free individual and his decades in captivity, reflects a dual existence between what he termed ‘social time’ and ‘parallel time.’ His efforts to bridge these realities—through education, writing, and personal relationships—highlight a fierce determination to foster a legacy of knowledge and resilience. Milad’s birth, achieved against formidable odds, symbolizes not just new life but a continuation of struggle and a beacon of future possibilities for the Palestinian people.

This retelling of Walid Daqqah’s life story not only emphasizes his personal and political struggles but also frames his legacy through the impactful symbolism of his daughter’s life. It portrays his life’s work not as a series of events defined by confinement but as a continuous fight for dignity, intellectual freedom, and national identity.