Abdel Halim Abu Ghazala
Egypt's army officer
An army officer who fought in every significant war against Israel Abdel-Halim Abu Ghazala rose to be Egypt's Defence Minister.
A member of the Egyptian free officers' movement whose coup in 1952 overthrew the monarchy of King Farouk, Abu Ghazala acted along with Col. Jamal Abd al-Nasser and Anwar al-Saadat. Once seen as heir apparent to President Anwar al-Saadat when he was assassinated in 1981, President Hosni Mubarak moved him to the ceremonial position of 'presidential advisor'.
Abu Ghazala fought in the 1967 and 1973 wars against Israel and in 1981 President al-Saadat appointed him Defence Minister and general commander of the army.
As Defence Minister Abu Ghazala worked with Mubarak to hold together the 1979 peace treaty with Israel, which Saadat had signed in the face of popular apposition?
A champion of military reform and alliance with Washington Abu Ghazala built up a defence manufacturing and industrial base in Egypt.
Fluent in English, French and Russian Abu Ghazala resigned, in 1993, from all his posts and disappeared from public life.
Born in Al Zohour village in the northern El Beheira province Abu Ghazala graduated from the Egyptian military academy in 1949. He also received a degree from the then Stalin Academy in the former Soviet Union.
Compiled by:M. Nauman Khan