Zhukov was born to a poor family peasant family. he became a furrier, before being drafted into the Russian army during World War I. He rose rapidly in the ranks of the Soviet army after the revolution. Prior to the German attack on the Soviet Union Zhukov defeated a Japanese force in an undeclared war with Japan.When the Germans attacked Zhukov was the Cheif of the General Staff, but after a number of disagreements with Stalin he was removed from his post. however even Stalin recognized his abilities so instead of executing him he was made commander of the Lenningrad Front. Later he became commander of Stalingrad where he commanded the counteroffensive that defeated the Germans. Zhukov led Soviet troops across Poland and on to Berlin. He became the first Soviet military commander of Germany.
After the war Zhukov became the Soviet Defense Minister. He was forced into retirement in 1957 by political rivals