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For other uses, see Zakhaev.
"Our so-called leaders prostituted us to the West... destroyed our culture... our economies... our honor. Our blood has been spilled on our soil. My blood... on their hands. They are the invaders. All U.S. and British forces will leave Russia immediately... or suffer the consequences."
— Zakhaev's speech during the cutscene before Ultimatum.


Imran Zakhaev (Russian: Имран Захаев) was a Russian arms dealer, Ultranationalist, and terrorist who is the primary antagonist in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. He is the leader of the "Four Horsemen", father of Victor Zakhaev, and the cunning mastermind behind the uprisings in Russia and the Arabian Peninsula. He survived an assassination attempt by then Lieutenant John Price, and then was killed by John "Soap" MacTavish in the level "Game Over". It was through Zakhaev's lasting machinations and ideals that the catastrophes of World War III occurred in 2016, five years after his own death.

Biography

Failed Assassination Attempt

"Ok... I think I see him. Wait for my mark. Target acquired. I have a positive I.D. on Imran Zakhaev."
— Captain MacMillan while giving the order to kill.

Fifteen years before the civil war in Russia, in 1996, Zakhaev was nothing more than a black-market arms dealer. He saw the collapse of the Communist regime in the Soviet Union, as an opportunity to salvage radioactive fuel rods from the Chernobyl nuclear power-plant in Pripyat, Ukraine, and sell the precious uranium as nuclear material on the black market.[1] Through the profits he gained from these dealings, Zakhaev planned to fund his own extremist military faction that would regain control of Russia, and restore its Soviet-era regime.

His criminal activities were noted by British intelligence, and the Special Air Service gained its first assassination order since the ending of World War II. The SAS dispatched two operatives, Captain MacMillan and Lieutenant John Price, to Pripyat as snipers to eliminate Zakhaev. Pripyat, an abandoned ghost town since the 1986 Chernobyl disaster, and the peaceful countryside surrounding the town, were swarming with Russian mercenaries employed by Zakhaev. However, MacMillan and Price, wearing ghillie suits, were able to sneak into the city unnoticed. Shooting from over 800 meters away with his Barrett M82 sniper rifle, Price shot Zakhaev in the left shoulder, when his target was meeting business partners near the Chernobyl power-plant.[2] The Russian mercenaries attempted to eliminate the intruders, but MacMillan and Price were able to escape Pripyat. MacMillan believed Zakhaev would die from shock and blood loss, but this was not the case. Zakhaev survived after being driven away to safety by Vladimir Makarov and Yuri, but the failed assassination attempt cost Zakhaev his left arm.

Zakhaev's Plan

Fifteen years later, in 2011, Zakhaev became the chairman of the Russian Ultranationalist Party. In his opinion, the current Russian government had "prostituted" his beloved homeland to the West, ruining their economy, their culture and their honor of the country in the process. Harbouring a strong and keen hatred of Western countries, Zakhaev sought to return Russia to its "prime", possibly seeking to return it to its condition before the Soviet Union collapsed, though with himself in power. To topple the current Russian government, Zakhaev took the next step in his plan and the Ultranationalist party waged a political crisis that escalated into civil war in Russia. The Ultranationalist troops were supported by old Soviet-era vehicles, including BM-21 rocket artillery, BMP-2 infantry fighting vehicles and Mi-24 helicopter gunships, and the field commander of the Ultranationalist forces was Zakhaev's son, Victor. The Russian civil war became critical to world peace as it became clear that if the Ultranationalists would win, Zakhaev would have unlimited access to the entire Russian nuclear weapons arsenal, including over 15,000 active nuclear warheads.[3] However, his plan to overthrow the government met heavy resistance from the Russian military units, loyal to the current Russian government.

The Coup

Imran Zakhaev understood his plan would never work, because the civil war could draw the attention of the United States and Britain, both of whom supported the current Russian government. However, Zakhaev had an influential political ally in an unnamed country in the Arabian Peninsula, a military commander named Khaled Al-Asad. Zakhaev contacted Al-Asad, and funded and masterminded a military coup in which President Yasir Al-Fulani was overthrown by the soldiers loyal to Al-Asad. Zakhaev and his son took part in the coup in the Arabian Peninsula; Victor Zakhaev was in the car that transported President Al-Fulani to the arena where he was executed, and Zakhaev himself witnessed Al-Fulani's execution.[4] In fact, it was Zakhaev who gave Al-Asad the Desert Eagle that was used to execute Al-Fulani on national television. Al-Asad assumed control of his homeland, causing political instability in the Middle East and leading to the United States Marine Corps invading the country, and the capital city of Al-Asad's homeland was soon under attack by the US forces. However, Vladimir Makarov detonated a Russian-made nuclear bomb, leveling the city and wiping out the invading enemy force.[5] Before the American invasion, Al-Asad had already taken refuge in Azerbaijan, where he was protected by Zakhaev's Ultranationalist forces.[6] However, the SAS operatives, led by John Price, now a captain, captured and interrogated Al-Asad, executing him shortly afterwards. The evidence gathered by the SAS revealed that Zakhaev had provided Al-Asad with the nuclear weapon, that was detonated in the Arabian Peninsula. It also revealed that he was the mastermind responsible for everything in the Middle East.

Victor Zakhaev's Suicide

"Our so-called leaders prostituted us to the West... destroyed our culture... our economies... our honor. Our blood has been spilled on our soil. My blood... on their hands. They are the invaders. All U.S. and British forces will leave Russia immediately... or suffer the consequences."
— Imran Zakhaev's speech.

When the United Kingdom and United States understood Zakhaev had planned to divert the attention of both countries from the Russian civil war, the Special Air Service and United States Marine Corps were ordered to locate and capture Victor Zakhaev, in order to persuade him to reveal the location of his father. However, the operation failed when Zakhaev's son committed suicide to prevent his capture.[7] Angered by the death of his son, Zakhaev demanded all US and British forces to leave Russia immediately or "suffer the consequences" by launching ICBMs from the missile silo captured by the Ultranationalist forces, but the SAS and Force Reconnaissance operatives were dispatched to Central Russia to deactivate the nuclear warheads in the silo.[8] Zakhaev launched two RT-2UTTH Topol-M ballistic missiles to the eight largest cities in the East Coast of the United States: Boston, Hartford, New York, Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington D.C., Richmond and Norfolk.[9] Since the missiles carried multiple independent nuclear warheads, it was estimated that the nuclear holocaust on the US soil would kill over 41 million US citizens. However, the SAS and Force Reconnaissance operatives were able to secure the silo and deactivate all nuclear warheads in the missiles.[10]

Death

Vladimir Petrovich kills Alderman
The SAS and Force Reconnaissance operatives then attempted to flee from the silo, but the bridge that was crucial to their escape was destroyed by an Ultranationalist Mi-24 helicopter. During the fire fight on the bridge, Staff Sergeant Griggs of the Force Reconnaissance was killed by the Ultranationalists while attempting to save Soap, and Zakhaev and his bodyguards arrived to the scene. Zakhaev personally executed SAS operative Gaz and his bodyguards shot two other SAS commandos, and he moved to kill John Price and John "Soap" MacTavish.

Suddenly, Zakhaev and his bodyguards were distracted by the explosion of their Mi-24 helicopter, caused by a Loyalist Mi-28 attack helicopter and the arrival of Sergeant Kamarov's troops. Price used this opportunity to slide his M1911 to Soap, and while Zakhaev had his back turned, he and his bodyguards were shot dead by MacTavish.

Legacy

Mw2 zakhaev 1

Imran Zakhaev's memorial statue in Moscow, Russia.

Following Zakhaev's death, it was announced that the Ultranationalist Party had begun developing leadership struggles. It was later revealed that a schism split the group in two, with Vladimir Makarov, a 'wild dog', forming a violent terrorist group, and Boris Vorshevsky becoming the legitimate President of Russia at the head of a politically stable Ultranationalist party.[11]

Five years following his death, in 2016, Imran Zakhaev was revealed to have had a statue of himself erected in Moscow, Russia, with a plaque entitled "Imran Zakhaev, Hero of the New Russia".[12] He also had an airport named after him in his honor, later to be the target of a terrorist attack. By this point, it appeared the Ultranationalists were successful in gaining strong sympathy from the Russian populace in the five years after his death, gaining a political stronghold in Russia rather than a military one.

Quotes

"My son's blood, on their hands."
— Zakhaev's only words in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2


Appearances

Gallery

Trivia

  • Zakhaev is the first main antagonist of the series.
  • No matter where the player shoots Zakhaev in "One Shot, One Kill", the bullet seems to curve down or up and his left arm immediately flies off, and he is still seen with his left arm missing in the later missions.
  • In the actual game, Zakhaev can only be heard speaking once. This occurs in the opening cutscene of "Ultimatum" where he broadcasts his speech in retaliation of his son's death.
    • Interestingly, his name is in green, as if he were a friendly.
  • Zakhaev's first name suggests that he has Muslim heritage, as "Imran" is one of the chapters in the Muslims' holy book, Quran. However, as Zakhaev's main intention is to change Russia back into the Soviet Union, it isn't clear if he lost his Muslim faith. Also, his son is named Victor, a secular name. It could also be a reference to the Russo-Chechen Wars, the Chechens being generally Islamic. Given the former borders of the Soviet Union, it's possible that he's from Azerbaijan - the same place as his safe house - which is approximately 95% percent Muslim.
  • Zakhaev wears flecktarn camouflage trousers close to that of the Bundeswehr (German Armed Forces).
  • Zakhaev wears the same clothes throughout the game, even in "One Shot, One Kill" which takes place fifteen years before the events of the game.
Imran zakhaev

Imran Zakhaev's early appearance, seen in the trailer for Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.

  • The beta Zakhaev appearance can be seen in the Call of Duty 4 trailer. He somewhat looks more Asian than Russian in the trailer.
  • While Zakhaev is the Chairperson of the Ultranationalist party, he also appears to be of General ranking as evidenced by two golden stars that can be seen on the lapel of his coat. While in the United States this would make him a Major General, in Russia a two-star general is a Lieutenant General. This can also be seen in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2's world reveal trailer. He is currently tied with Call of Duty: World at War's Major-General Heinrich Amsel as the second-highest ranking officer to be killed in a Call of Duty game, the first being Lt. Gen. Shepherd from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 (who has three stars, as opposed to two).
  • In the beginning of the Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare trailer, a voice sounding very similar to Zakhaev says "This game is not yet rated." At the end he speaks Russian. This is similar to the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 trailer where Vladimir Makarov speaks Russian at the end of the trailer.
  • In Game Over, no matter where Zakhaev is shot, he will clutch his stomach.
  • A portrait of Zakhaev is in one of the buildings in Salvage. Also, his name, 'Zakhaev' is written across one of the walls.
  • In the cutscene before the mission "Ultimatum," he will say his speech, but his name in the subtitles is green when it should be red, as he is an enemy.
  • If the player shoots Zakhaev in the head in "Game Over", no blood will be seen.
  • Even though Zakhaev can only be heard speaking once, he can be seen speaking from a distance in One Shot, One Kill to the dealers about something. Judging the look on his face and expressions with his arms he looked angry about something, possibly the price his partner offered for the nuclear material.
  • The name "Zakhaev" can be seen spray painted on to a wall in the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 map Quarry.
  • The airport's name in "No Russian" and Terminal is named "Zakhaev International Airport".
  • In Call of Duty: Black Ops, Lev Kravchenko, as well as Mason and Reznov during the events of "Rebirth", wear very similar clothing to Zakhaev.
  • If the player noclip's out of the map, one can go to the spot where Zakhaev was shot and see his arm on the floor, albeit with no blood or any other graphic content.[13]
  • When the player shoots Zakhaev in "One Shot, One Kill", Zakhaev seems to fall to the floor, but in the flashback in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Zakhaev gets straight in the car.
  • He appears to be inspired to some extent by Vladmir Lennin, the first Communist leader of the USSR. Like Lennin, Zakhaev wishes to overthrow the current government of Russia, because they wish to put it under Communist rule and are willing to do this by terrorism. Both are also influenced by the demise of someone close to them, Lennin by the execution of his brother and Zakhaev by the demise of his son. Both Lennin and Zakhaev's successors also carry on their ideals, and warp them to such an extent, causing the demise of millions.
  • Zakhaev is so far the only character in the Call of Duty franchise to have an entire limb missing, Viktor Reznov is close but he only lost his finger.

References

  1. "All Ghillied Up" intro, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  2. "One Shot, One Kill", Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  3. "F.N.G." intro, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  4. "The Coup", Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  5. "Shock and Awe", Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  6. "Safehouse", Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  7. "Sins Of The Father", Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  8. "Ultimatum", Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  9. "All In" intro, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  10. "No Fighting In The War Room", Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare
  11. "Loose Ends", Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
  12. "S.S.D.D.", Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
  13. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xer6saUhso8&feature=related
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