General Staff of the Vietnam People's Army

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Bộ Tổng tham mưu
(General Staff)
Vietnam People's Army General Staff insignia.jpg
Insignia of the General Staff
Active September 7, 1945–present
Country  Vietnam
Allegiance Flag of Viet Nam Peoples Army.svg Vietnam People's Army
Branch Active duty
Type Staff
Part of Ministry of Defence
Vietnam People's Army
Garrison/HQ Hanoi
Commanders
Current Chief of General Staff Col. Gen. Đỗ Bá Tỵ
First Chief of General Staff Maj. Gen. Hoàng Văn Thái

General Staff (Vietnamese: Bộ Tổng tham mưu) is the commanding and managing organization of the Vietnam People's Army, the paramilitary forces, militia and other activities relating to defence of Vietnam. The General Staff was established on September 7, 1945, right after the foundation of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam, the first Chief of the General Staff was Major General Hoàng Văn Thái. During the Second Indochina War, Vietnam War, Cambodian-Vietnamese War, Sino-Vietnamese War and other skirmishes, the General Staff always had an essential role in organizing, commanding the armed forces and planning, operating military campaigns for the Ministry of Defence and the Government of Vietnam. The current Chief of the General Staff is Lieutenant General Đỗ Bá Tỵ who also holds the position of Vice Minister of Defence.

History and roles[edit]

Right after the August Revolution and the foundation of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam on September 2, 1945, the General Staff was established on September 7, 1945.[1][2] The first Chief of the General Staff was Major General Hoàng Văn Thái who held the position from 1945 to 1953.[3] During the existence of the General Headquarters of the Vietnam People's Army (Bộ Tổng tư lệnh Quân đội Nhân dân Việt Nam), which had been the supreme commanding organ of the armed forces from 1946 to 1975, the General Staff was directly under the General Headquarters and acted as staff of the General Headquarters according to the decree No. 47/SL which was issued on May 1, 1947.

After the Vietnam War, the General Headquarters was dissolved and the General Staff began to operate under the Ministry of Defence in the position of commanding and managing organization of the Vietnam People's Army, the paramilitary forces, militia and other activities relating to defence of Vietnam. From 1978, the Chief of Staff was also Deputy Minister of Defence and would take the position of acting minister during the absence of the Mnister of Defence.[4] Following the demise of Senior Lieutenant General Nguyễn Khắc Nghiên, the current Chief of Staff is Senior Lieutenant General Đỗ Bá Tỵ.[5]

Structure[edit]

Gen. Phùng Quang Thanh, Chief of the General Staff from 2001 to 2006.

The organization of the General Staff consists of:[4]

  • Bureau of the General Staff (Văn phòng Bộ Tổng tham mưu)
  • Department of Political Affairs (Cục Chính trị)
  • Department of Operations (Cục Tác chiến)
  • Department of Military Forces (Cục Quân lực)
  • Department of Electronic Warfare (Cục Tác chiến điện tử)
  • Department of Politico-Military Training (Cục Quân huấn). This is also the office responsible for the sport activities of the Army including the operation of the Thể Công football club.
  • Department of Cartography (Cục Bản đồ)
  • Department of Cryptography (Cục Cơ yếu)
  • Department of Administrative Management (Cục Quản lý hành chính). This department is equivalent to a logistics body of the General Staff.
  • Department of Schools (Cục Nhà trường)
  • Department of Civil Defence (Cục Dân quân tự vệ)

Besides, the General Staff also directly manages the operation of the 144th Brigade, which undertakes the military control, two Colleges (Cao đẳng) No. 3 and No. 8, and several other units.

List of Chiefs of General Staff[edit]

Time Chief of General Staff Notes
1945–1953, 1954 Maj. Gen. Hoàng Văn Thái Later promoted to General, Deputy Minister of Defence, Member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Vietnam.[3]
1953–1954, 1954–1978 Maj. Gen. Văn Tiến Dũng Later promoted to full General, Minister of Defence, Member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam.[6]
1978–1986 Lt. Gen. Lê Trọng Tấn Later promoted to full General, Deputy Minister of Defence, Member of the Central Committee.[7]
1986–1987 Gen. Lê Đức Anh Later elected to President of Vietnam, Member of the Politburo.[8]
1987–1991 Col. Gen. Đoàn Khuê Later promoted to full General, Minister of Defence, Member of the Politburo.[9]
1991–1995 Col. Gen. Đào Đình Luyện Held at the same time the position of Deputy Minister of Defence, Member of the Central Committee.
1995–1997 Lt. Gen. Phạm Văn Trà Later promoted to full General, Minister of Defence, Member of the Politburo.
1997–1998 Lt. Gen. Đào Trọng Lịch Died in an aircraft crash in 1998.[10]
1998–2001 Lt. Gen. Lê Văn Dũng Later promoted to full General, Director of the General Department of Politics, Secretary of the Central Committee.
2001–2006 Col. Gen. Phùng Quang Thanh Later promoted to full General, Minister of Defence, Member of the Politburo.
2006–2010 Col. Gen. Nguyễn Khắc Nghiên Member of the Central Committee.[11]
2010–present Lt. Gen. Đỗ Bá Tỵ Vice Minister of Defence, Member of the Central Committee

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Ministry of Defence (2009), White book, p. 110
  2. ^ Mai Phương (2007-09-07). "Gặp mặt truyền thống các thế hệ cán bộ" (in Vietnamese). Qdnd.vn. 
  3. ^ a b "Hoàng Văn Thái" (in Vietnamese). Từ điển Bách khoa toàn thư Việt Nam. 
  4. ^ a b Ministry of Defence (2009), White book, p. 53
  5. ^ "Đỗ Bá Tỵ" (in Vietnamese). National Assembly of Vietnam. 
  6. ^ "Văn Tiến Dũng" (in Vietnamese). Từ điển Bách khoa toàn thư Việt Nam. 
  7. ^ "Lê Trọng Tấn" (in Vietnamese). Từ điển Bách khoa toàn thư Việt Nam. 
  8. ^ "Lê Đức Anh" (in Vietnamese). Từ điển Bách khoa toàn thư Việt Nam. 
  9. ^ "Đoàn Khuê" (in Vietnamese). Từ điển Bách khoa toàn thư Việt Nam. 
  10. ^ "Bay qua đỉnh Phy Phả Xây" (in Vietnamese). Tuoitre.com.vn. 2005-06-06. 
  11. ^ "Nguyễn Khắc Nghiên" (in Vietnamese). National Assembly of Vietnam. 

References[edit]

  • Ministry of Defence of Vietnam (2009). White book of Defence of Vietnam (in Vietnamese). Hanoi: World Publishing House.