HAREL (Heb. לֵארַה), kibbutz in the Jerusalem corridor, east of Huldah, affiliated with Kibbutz Arẓi ha-Shomer ha-Ẓa'ir, founded in October 1948. Harel was established on a site where hard battles had been fought four months earlier (see Israel war of independence ). The first settlers were Palmaḥ veterans of the Harel Brigade who had fought in the area and in Jerusalem; they were later joined by immigrants from various countries. Farming was based on deciduous fruit orchards, field crops, grapevines, etc. In more recent years the kibbutz set up a winery together with private investor, producing wines from the kibbutz's grapes. In addition, Harel owns a guesthouse with 33 rooms. Carob plantations and large forests have been planted in the vicinity, in the middle of which stands the Harel panorama tower. In the mid-1990s, the population was approximately 70, doubling in size to 145 by 2002. (Efraim Orni / Shaked Gilboa (2nd ed.)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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