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Ahmadinejad's Jewish Roots

Iran's Holocaust-denying leader, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, might have changed his last name to hide his Jewish roots, the Daily Telegraph reports. A photo of Ahmadinejad holding up his identity card reveals his last name used to be Sabourjian, a Jewish name meaning "cloth weaver," before his family changed it after converting to Islam. The "jian" at the end of the name means the family were practicing Jews, according to one expert. The name is on a list of reserved names for Iranian Jews kept by the Ministry of the Interior. Ahmadinejad’s virulent attacks against Jews might be a sort of overcompensation to hide his roots in a radical Shia society, experts say. Ahmadinejad has admitted his family changed their name but has not said why.