SHOMRAT (Heb. שָׁמְרַת), kibbutz in northern Israel, 2 mi.(3 km.) N.E. of Acre, affiliated with Kibbutz Arẓi ha-Shomer ha-Ẓa'ir. Shomrat was founded as the first new settlement in the State of Israel on May 29, 1948, immediately after the capture of Acre in the *War of Independence. The settlers were pioneers from Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and Romania. In 1970 Shomrat had 324 inhabitants; in 2002, 358. Its farming included irrigated field and fodder crops, avocado plantations, dairy cattle and poultry. For many years the kibbutz had a furniture factory and was a partner in Ha-Shomer ha-Ẓa'ir industrial enterprises in the Haifa Bay area. It also operated guest rooms. The kibbutz achieved notoriety when a local girl was raped by a gang of kibbutz youngsters in 1988. Their initial acquittal caused a great public outcry and the act itself severely tarnished the kibbutz image. Four of the assailants were later convicted on appeal. The name Shomrat is derived from shomer ("guardsman"), and also evokes the Ha-Shomer ha-Ẓa'ir movement.
[Efram Orni /
Shaked Gilboa (2nd ed.)]