Vasile Milea

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Vasile Milea
39th Minister of National Defense of Romania
In office
16 December 1985 – 22 December 1989
PresidentNicolae Ceaușescu
Preceded byConstantin Olteanu [ro]
Succeeded byNicolae Militaru
89th Chief of the Romanian General Staff
In office
31 March 1980 – 16 February 1985
PresidentNicolae Ceaușescu
Preceded byIon Hortopan [ro]
Succeeded byȘtefan Gușă
Personal details
Born1 January 1927
Lerești, Argeș, Romania
Died22 December 1989 (aged 62)
Bucharest, Romania
ProfessionMilitary Officer
Military service
RankGeneral colonel

Vasile Milea (1 January 1927 – 22 December 1989) was Nicolae Ceaușescu's minister of defense during the Romanian Revolution of 1989 and was involved in the reprisal phase of the revolution that caused the deaths of 162 people.

Boulevard General Vasile Milea, Bucharest, Sector 6

Milea committed suicide. However, several members of his family claim that he was killed on the orders of Ceaușescu. Milea was already in severe disfavour for sending troops to quell the uprising in Timișoara without ammunition.[1] Whatever the case, Milea's death caused the rank-and-file soldiers to go over almost en masse to the revolution, effectively ending Communist rule in Romania.[2]

A report from 2005 after a full investigation including a postmortem concluded that Milea killed himself using the weapon of one of his attendants. It suggested that he only tried to incapacitate himself in order to be relieved from office, but the bullet hit an artery and he died soon afterwards.[3]


  1. ^ Sebetsyen, Victor (2009). Revolution 1989: The Fall of the Soviet Empire. New York City: Pantheon Books. ISBN 0-375-42532-2., p. 389
  2. ^ Jeremy Bransten (1999), "Romania: The Bloody Revolution in 1989: Chaos As The Ceausescus Are Executed", Ten Years After: The Fall of the Communism in East/Central Europe.
  3. ^ Flavius Cristian Marcau, "Revolution of 1989: Milea's Suicide", University of Târgu Jiu, Letter and Social Science Series, Issue 4, 2013, Retrieved February 27, 2016.


  • Vasile Milea, Victor Atanasiu, România în anii primului război mondial: caracterul drept, eliberator al participării României la război, vol. 2, Ed. Militară, Bucharest, 1987. OCLC 18616519