Log In

Saad Mohammed el-Husseini el-Shazly سعد الدين محمد الحسينى الشاذلى

military commander , politician

Saad Mohamed el-Husseiny el-Shazly was an Egyptian military commander. He was Egypt's chief of staff during the October War. Following his public criticism of the Camp David Accords, he was dismissed from his post as Ambassador to Britain and Portugal, then he went to Algeria as a political refugee.


Saad Mohammed was born on April 1, 1922 Cairo, Egypt.


Educated in the capital, then commissioned from the Military College in 1940.


After serving in the Palestine War of 1948 he took a course at the Staff College in 1952 and then went to the USA on a parachuting course before being posted to a paratroop battalion in 1952. Resuming his studies, he gained his MA in Political Science in 1954. He commanded a paratroop battalion in the Suez War in 1956.

He was in the Soviet Union for 12 months on an advanced training course at Fronz Military Academy in 1958-1959 and then was sent abroad again in August 1960 in command of the Egyptian unit with the United Nations peace-keeping forces in the Congo (Zaire). On his return to Cairo in February 1961 he was given leave and posted as military attache to the Egyptian Embassy in London where he stayed almost four years. Back into battle in 1965, he commanded a combat unit in the Yemen. His record in the June 1967 War with Israel led to his appointment as commander of the Special Squads on the Suez front.

In January 1970 he took command of the southern front in war preparations against Israel. In May on his appointment as Chief of Staff he also became Assistant Secretary-General of Military Affairs at the Arab League. At meetings of foreign and defence ministers at the Arab League he talks about “the coming battle” with Israel and has little interest in proposals for a negotiated settlement. Promoted to lieutenant-general in January 1972, he takes a keen interest in military exercises.


  • After the 25 of January revolution in 2011 and removal of Mubarak from the Egyptian government, el-Shazly was honored by putting his name on the Egyptian Military Academy graduates of the year 2013.He was also honored by naming a new highway connecting the Cairo ring road to Ismailia desert road that is being built by the armed forces engineers. Aljazeera documentary channel produced a film about his life in 2012-2013.


Leading hawk in the military hierarchy who could be War Minister one day. Paratroop commander, trained in the USA and Russia, with a proud record of bravery and skill in battle. One of the rare heroes on Egypt’s side during the Six-Day War of June 1967 who dodged being taken prisoner by making his way across Sinai disguised as a Bedouin in order to rejoin his unit and bolster morale.


A strong critic of Russian military advisers in Egypt and the Soviet reluctance to meet Egyptian arms requests, he was denied promotion when President Sadat began thawing out relations with Russia and dismissed General Sadek as War Minister. He remains a popular officer, particularly with Suez front-line units whom he once commanded, and he has a strong military power base.