Mahmoud Ahmadinejad excelled in school at an early age. After the 1979 Islamic revolution, he entered politics. He served as Mayor of Tehran before being elected President of Iran in 2005. His pursuit of a nuclear program and anti-Israeli rhetoric has put him at odds with the United States and much of Europe. His domestic and economic policies led to greater equality and improved quality of life, especially for poor Iranians, but the sanctions imposed on Iran have set back this progress.