|LOOKING PRETTY DAMN GOOD AT 100|
Gen. Giap not only defeated the Americans, he knocked off the French and battled the Japanese, too. His defeat of the French at the battle of Dien Bien Phu was historic and demonstrated that the time of the colonial empires was coming to a rapid end. His leadership role in ousting of the USA from Vietnam helped begin the long (and on going) decline of American imperialism.
You know all this, but did you know that the old general has not rested on his laurels. He has not been afraid to speak up when need be to help push his country to achieve the potential demonstrated by its history.
General Giap has called his Party to task on occasion (and has made some enemies as a result). In 1982, to the shock of the nation, he was ousted from the Politburo, some say due to jealousy of his popularity, stature, intellect, and a bit concerned by his continued outspokenness. Didn't shut up the old soldier. For example, in 1986, he criticized the Party, saying of it,
‘"the prevailing bureaucracy, corruption and red tape reduce the party’s reputation and threaten its very existence.’
(However, I have to add, for many war veterans, his criticism didn’t go far enough.)
Did you know that General Giap has also taken on environmental
degradation in Vietnam. Quoting from Asia Beat:
Vo Nguyen Giap celebrated his 100th birthday in August.
A great man for an entire century.
If only there were more.
The following is from VietNam News.
Leaders visit master tactician Gen Giap on 100th birthday