Iranian President (Dictator) Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was born Jewish and converted to Islam, according to a report in London's Daily Telegraph.
The Saturday report cited a photograph from 2008 which showed Ahmadinejad holding up his identity card, bearing his former last name, Sabourjian, a common Jewish name in Iran.
The Telegraph said that the name was "Jewish" for cloth weaver, and that the Iranian president's family had changed their name when they converted to Islam. "The name derives from "weaver of the Sabour," the name for the Jewish Tallit shawl in Persia," the report said.
The report also cited experts as speculating that Ahmadinejad's anti-Semitic rhetoric may be a kind of overcompensation to conceal his heritage. "Every family that converts into a different religion takes a new identity by condemning their old faith… By making anti-Israeli statements he is trying to shed any suspicions about his Jewish connections," Ali Nourizadeh, the head of the Centre for Arab and Iranian Studies was quoted as saying.