Gush Emunim Leader Hanan Porat Is Born
(L-R) Rabbi Moshe Levinger and Hanan Porat celebrating the establishment of the first West Bank settlement in 1975. Photo: Moshe Milner

December 12, 1943

Hanan Porat, a leader in Israel’s post-1967 settlement movement, is born in Kfar Pines, northeast of Hadera. The family moves in 1944 to Kfar Etzion in the Judean Hills, then returns to Kfar Pines after the massacre of the village’s Jews on May 13, 1948, the day before Israel declares independence. Porat leads the re-establishment of Kfar Etzion as a religious settlement after Israel captures the West Bank in the June 1967 war.

Porat is a founder of Gush Emunim, an Orthodox movement launched in 1974 to promote Jewish settlement of the West Bank, Gaza and the Golan Heights in the belief that they are part of the area God promised to the Jewish people. He calls for resistance to Israel’s withdrawal from Gaza in 2005.

An Orthodox rabbi and educator, Porat is elected to the Knesset five times, serving from 1981 to 1984 as a member of Tehiya and from 1988 to 1999, first with the National Religious Party, then with a breakaway faction (originally Emunim, later Tekuma) and finally with the National Union.

The father of 11 dies of cancer Oct. 4, 2010, at age 67. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remembers Porat as a man who “dedicated his life to building up the land of Israel and to educating generations of students about religious Zionism and loving the land of Israel and the Jewish people.””