Ahmad Shah Massoud also known as the ‘Lion of Panjshir’ is considered to be a hero in Afghanistan. His face is depicted everywhere; on huge billboards, posters and even carpets. He fought against the soviets between 1979 and 1989 and also served as the main anti-Taliban and anti-Al Qaeda resistance leader. He played a major part in the so-called Rome process which put into effect an alliance against the Taliban and sought to find a peaceful post-Taliban solution for Afghanistan. Massoud was assassinated in Afghanistan by two Arab suicide bombers, allegedly belonging to Al-Qaeda, on September 9, 2001, two days before the attacks of September 11 that caused the US and NATO to invade Afghanistan.
Source: Wikipedia & personal communication