||Judah Leon Magnes (1877–1948), U.S. rabbi and communal leader. He was chancellor and first president of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Magnes was born in San Francisco, California, to parents who emigrated from Poland and Germany in 1863. He attended the Hebrew Union College, where he was ordained as a Reform rabbi in 1900. Magnes spent the years 1900–03 studying in Berlin and Heidelberg. During his years in Germany he traveled widely in Eastern Europe and was profoundly moved by the intensive Jewish life he found. It strengthened his earlier sympathetic feeling toward Zionism and brought him to the commitment to make Zionism and service to his people his mission in life.
In this work Magnes sets out the arguments, out of his pacifist convictions and the belief that the Jews are not like all nations, he sought an accord with the Palestinian Arabs and entered the political arena with the conviction that Jewish-Arab accord is of the greatest importance not only for the peaceful building of the country but also for the Jewish spirit. He started his political agitation immediately after the 1929 disturbances, stating, "One of the greatest cultural duties of the Jewish people is the attempt to enter the promised land, not by means of conquest as Joshua, but through peaceful and cultural means, through hard work, sacrifices, love and with a decision not to do anything which cannot be justified before the world conscience" (Opening Speech of the Hebrew University Academic Year 1929/30). Magnes renewed his activities after the riots in 1936 and opposed the Royal Commission's suggestion for the partitioning of Palestine, always believing in the policy of establishing Palestine as a binational state and feeling that it was his personal mission to bring the Arabs and Jews together.