Vo Nguyen Giap
Vietnamese revolutionary and government minister Vo Nguyen Giap joined the Communist underground against the French in the 1930's. He was responsible for organizing the Viet Minh into a fighting force capable of defeating the French at Dien Bien Phu in 1954.
Giap served as Defense Minister and commander of the North Vietnamese army. After several military setbacks, including the Tet Offensive and the Easter Offensive, Giap was replaced as commander by Van Tien Dung; in 1980 Dung also took over the Defense Ministry role.