Vo Nguyen Giap
Giap, Vo Nguyen (vô nəwēˈĕn jäp) [key], 1911–, soldier and government official of North Vietnam and later of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. A nationalist, he joined the Vietnamese Communist party in the 1930s, later joining Ho Chi Minh in China. Giap helped to organize the Viet Minh forces, fighting to oust the Japanese in World War II and the French after the war; he became commander of the Viet Minh in 1946. A master of guerrilla warfare, he was credited with the defeat of the French at Dienbienphu (1954) and later directed the strategy of the North in the Vietnam War, notably in the 1968 Tet offensive. In addition to his position as commander in chief, Giap was also deputy prime minister and minister of defense. He resigned from defense in 1980 and was dropped from the politburo in 1982, but remained deputy prime minister until 1991.
See his Military Art of People's War: Selected Writings, ed. by R. Stetler (1970); R. J. O'Neill, General Giap (1969); C. B. Currey, Victory at Any Cost (1997).
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