- "Revenge is like a ghost. It takes over every man it touches. Its thirst cannot be quenched, until the last man standing has fallen. The world's men of action will look and wonder... how it came to this. You may be able to destroy me, but the beast will eventually come for you."
- — Makarov, in the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Reveal trailer
Vladimir Makarov (Russian: Владимир Макаров) (also referenced as Vladimir R. Makarov in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and Vladimir A. Makarov in Modern Warfare 3) is the main antagonist of the Modern Warfare franchise and was the leader of an Ultranationalist terrorist cell and Imran Zakhaev's protégé. Makarov is a minor character in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, is the secondary antagonist of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, and is the main antagonist of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. As well, he appears as a customization option in Call of Duty: Ghosts.
Makarov, a ruthless yet cunning strategist, often outmaneuvered his enemies and made them play by his rules. Taking the zero-sum game to heart, he did whatever was necessary to gain the upper-hand, without any regard to the loss of human life in the process. Makarov truly believed that the end justified the means, and until his death at the hands of John Price, Makarov's tactics would dictate the course of history.
Early Military/Terrorist Career
- "This man Makarov is fighting his own war and he has no rules. No boundaries. He doesn't flinch at torture, human trafficking, or genocide. He's not loyal to a flag or country or any set of ideals. He trades blood for money."
- — General Shepherd discusses Makarov's track record.
 According to intelligence gathered by General Shepherd, Vladimir Makarov graduated from the Frunze Military Academy as a captain in the Russian Army, first serving as a paratrooper. Later on in his career he made it into the Spetsnaz and served two tours in Chechnya. It is believed that a company under his command were involved with some of the most brutal "cleansing" raids.
At some point, the U.N. held an inquiry investigating these charges of human rights violations. Makarov's name appeared at the top of the list presented by an EU Investigation panel, but the inquiry was dropped when Makarov opted for discharge from the armed forces. This incident would mark the beginnings of his pathological hatred towards the West and the Russian government for giving him no other option but leave the armed forces. Afterwards, Makarov brought his past military training to bear in many criminal and terrorist enterprises such as human trafficking, money laundering, the bombing of military/civilian targets, assassination, etc. At some point, the leader of the burgeoning Ultranationalist Party, Imran Zakhaev, took notice and allowed Makarov a position within his anti-western movement. It is said that Makarov was "kept in check" by Zakhaev during this partnership.
Zakhaev's assassination attempt
- "This deal will generate millions for our cause. Money can buy many things. Even power. The road to our future begins here, my friend."
- — Vladimir explaining to Yuri their purpose of being at Chernobyl.
In 1996, Makarov, along with his fellow soldier Yuri, were present in Pripyat when Zakhaev was trading fuel rods for gold to fund the Ultranationalists, and witnessed Zakhaev being shot and having his left arm mutilated by Lieutenant Price during the deal. Makarov drove Zakhaev away from the area, saving his life and earning him Zakhaev's trust.
Crisis in the Middle East
- "Thousand of souls... extinguished... by the push of a button..."
- — Yuri recounts Makarov detonating the nuclear device.
Makarov was present during the U.S. Marine Corps invasion of the Middle East in an attempt to remove Khaled Al-Asad from power in 2011. He gives the order to detonate the nuclear device after receiving a phone call from Al-Asad (who was actually hiding out in his safehouse in Azerbaijan) watching the detonation from Al-Asad's safehouse, with Yuri being the only one to witness to this. This made Yuri even more fanatic about the Ultranationalist cause, but later it served as a catalyst for his hatred towards Makarov. The blast resulted in the deaths of over 30,000 Marines; among the dead were Sgt. Paul Jackson, Lt. Vasquez, Cpt. Pelayo and Lt. Volker. This is also the start of Makarov's madness as his hatred escalated even further. This event would also be a reason for Lieutenant General Shepherd's (who served as the invasion force's supreme commander) motives in 2016.
Rise to power
Zakhaev was killed by John "Soap" MacTavish, thanks to the combined U.S. Marines, Loyalist and SAS forces at the climax of the Second Russian Civil War; which caused the Ultranationalist party to splinter. Makarov's resources and contacts within the criminal world allowed him to assume control of a large portion of the dissolved Ultranationalist party, known officially as the "Inner Circle".
After the Ultranationalists become victors in the Second Russian Civil War through the Russian presidential election on August 10th, 2016, Makarov plays some part in the new Ultranationalist-run Russia under the mainstream party's newly elected leader and President Boris Vorshevsky. However, Vorshevsky and other moderate Ultranationalist leaders knew Makarov's extreme tactics would deter any hope of trying to distance the party away from its violent past and winning the support of the Russian people and for Makarov causing strained relations with the United States and the Russian Loyalists. Another reason behind his removal was his vision to see Russia return to autocratic rule, the time of the Tsars. His vision may incurred the wrath of a large number of members inside the party including Vorshevsky because this vision endangered their position as the new ruler of Russia. To ensure Ultranationalist position as Russia's legitimate representative to the world, Vorshevsky, backed by a strong majority of members in the party, removed Makarov and his men with immediate effect and tried to improve relations with the United States and Russian Loyalists. Furious with Vorshevsky's decision, Makarov vowed to destroy Vorshevsky and his inner circles, calling all of them traitors to their cause. A news clipping in his safehouse confirmed this new-found hatred, explaining continuous attacks conducted by Inner Circle towards Russia and Western interests for the next five years.
Blaming the team for Zakhaev's death
Many newspaper articles state that Makarov held up photos of Bravo Team (Gaz, Griggs, Price and MacTavish) and declared them to be responsible for the death of Imran Zakhaev. Most likely, Zakhaev's death is the reason that he holds a grudge against Price. Other news articles showed him responsible for several attacks in London and Moscow, threatening Ultranationalists removal from the government, fulfilling his vow to eliminate traitors to their cause.
Staging the Plan
In 2016, General Shepherd and his Task Force 141 are seemingly responsible for capturing Makarov and bringing him to justice. Shepherd selects American soldier Joseph Allen from the 75th Ranger Regiment and grooms him to become a CIA agent.
Shepherd then inserts Allen within Makarov's terrorist cell, seemingly for the purpose of some deep cover operation. However, unknown to the young soldier, Makarov knows who he is and sees him as a pawn to further escalate tensions between Russian government led by Vorshevsky and the U.S. government by implicating him in a terrorist attack, resulting a new conflict between Russia and America.
Airport Massacre and Global Conflict
- "The American thought he could deceive us. When they find that body... all of Russia will cry for war."
- — Vladimir Makarov after he kills Joseph Allen.
Makarov and his men launch their terrorist attack on Zakhaev International Airport with their latest member, Alexei Borodin (Joseph Allen's alias) in tow. By the end of the assault, it is made apparent that Makarov knows Borodin is an undercover CIA operative. He kills Allen and leaves his body at the scene of the massacre, implicating the American soldier in the attack. Makarov explains to his comrades that his actions were meant to bring about a full scale war between the United States and Russia. Incidentally, this war would personally benefit General Shepherd. Yuri, seemingly aware of Makarov's true plan, tried to stop the massacre by informing the FSB, only for him to be shot and left to die for betraying his old friend. Yuri tried vainly to stop the massacre, only to collapse due to massive loss of blood from his wound. Eventually, he was rescued and since then, held a deep grudge towards Makarov for his betrayal and his violent acts against his own countrymen.
The war ensues and General Shepherd is given supreme command over the military and a mandate to continue his search for Makarov, who the General now truly needs killed so that he can bury any evidence of foul play. Makarov and his men are tracked down to two possible locations. One element of the Task Force is sent after Makarov in his Safehouse in the Caucasus Mountains and another is sent to assassinate him at an airplane graveyard in Afghanistan. Shepherd then begins to purge his own Task Force of anyone who knows of his involvement with the airport massacre and the surrounding events. Makarov is contacted by Captain Price, who asks for intel on Shepherd's whereabouts. Realizing that his only hope for survival is getting rid of Shepherd, Makarov agrees to tell Price the location of Shepherd's base, Site Hotel Bravo. Price and MacTavish later act on this information and assassinate Shepherd.
- Makarov: "Russia will take all of Europe, even if it must stand upon a pile of ashes. I want the launch codes, Mr. President."
- President Vorshevsky: "You'll never get them."
- Makarov: "Every man has his weakness. (to his men) Find the girl."
- — Makarov and President Boris Vorshevsky at the end of "Turbulence."
With his chemical weapons ready and military invasion force set, Makarov hijacks President Vorshevsky's plane en-route to negotiate a peace treaty with the United States and NATO. Makarov's men force the plane to crash land where they swarm the site. Makarov kills Andrei Harkov, Leonid Pudovkin, and the rest of the President's security detail.
Assassination Attempt and Vorshevsky's Daughter
- "Yuri, my friend. You never should have come here."
- — Makarov to Yuri in "Blood Brothers".
With full scale war on the European continent, Makarov meets with his advisers, whose identities or nationalities are never disclosed to the player, in Prague. Aware that he is the target of assassination, like Zakhaev before him, Makarov sets a trap for the TF 141 operatives. Price and Yuri escape, but Soap is mortally wounded and eventually dies of his injuries. Makarov then talks to his second in command who is stationed in the Ultranationalist stronghold not far from Prague, and discusses plans to capture Alena Vorshevsky. Makarov's men get there before Delta Force can, and take her to an Ultranationalist base in a Diamond Mine in Eastern Siberia. However, a joint operation by both Delta Force and TF 141 rescues both Vorshevskys. Still seething over his abduction and betrayal by his own men, Vorshevsky later launches a purge to arrest every last hardliner in the party and bring them before the International Criminal Court. Fearful he might face the same fate, Makarov flees along with his followers from Russia.
- "Goodbye, Captain Price."
- — Makarov's last words.
With the war over, Makarov went into hiding in the Arabian Peninsula at the Hotel Oasis. In January, Price and Yuri assault the hotel, intent on killing him. Price catches up with Makarov, preventing his escape by a helicopter by killing the pilots. As the chopper crashes in the ensuing chaos, Makarov beats Price to his Desert Eagle and is about to kill him when he is shot by Yuri, who in turn is killed by him. Angered by the loss of another ally, Price beats Makarov down, wraps a cord around his neck and slams him through the glass roof, shredding and hanging him at the same time. Price smokes a cigar as he gazes on Makarov's lifeless body, dangling from the cable.
Death (Time Paradox)
|"Yeah, I'm cuttin' through history class now!"
In a massive divergence of events from the canon version of the Modern Warfare Timeline, Makarov's presence at the 1996 Chernobyl Assassination can cost him his life in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered. While he is monologuing to Yuri inside of the Jeep and watching the weapons deal between Zakhaev and the Spetsnaz Soldier, Makarov can be shot and killed by Price after Zakhaev get his arm blasted off by the sniper.
- Yuri - Status - K.I.A. Former right-hand man and friend of the Ultranationalists. Yuri attempted to stop the airport massacre, but was instead shot and left to die at the airport. This influenced Yuri to side with Task Force 141 in hopes of getting revenge against his former ally. Makarov was later wounded by Yuri, only to get three fatal shots from his former friend. Killed by Makarov himself in "Dust to Dust".
- Imran Zakhaev - Status - K.I.A. Arms dealer and former chairman of the Ultranationalist Party. Served as a mentor to Makarov. Makarov saved him from bleeding out when his left arm was severed in an assassination attempt. Killed by John "Soap" MacTavish in "Game Over".
- Viktor Zakhaev - Status - K.I.A. Imran Zakhaev's son and commander of the Ultranationalist forces in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. Killed by himself in "The Sins of The Father".
- Khaled Al-Asad - Status - K.I.A. Leader of the OpFor and organizer of the coup in the Middle East. He was ordered by Makarov on the phone to detonate the nuclear device in "Shock and Awe". Killed by John Price in his safehouse in Azerbaijan.
- Alejandro "Alex the Red" Rojas - Status - Alive/K.I.A. Arms dealer who supplied Makarov for the airport massacre. Hiding in a favela in Rio De Janeiro and protected/defended by the local militia. Captured and tortured by John "Soap" MacTavish, Simon "Ghost" Riley and Gary "Roach" Sanderson. He can be killed by the player at the start of "The Hornet's Nest".
- Joseph "Alexei Borodin" Allen - Status - K.I.A. Undercover CIA operative. Executed in order to instigate the Russo-American War. Killed by Makarov himself at the end of "No Russian".
- Viktor - Status - K.I.A. One of the terrorists who assists Makarov in "No Russian". Killed by the H.V.I. in "Exodus".
- Anatoly - Status - Unknown. One of the terrorists who assists Makarov in "No Russian" and one of the getaway drivers.
- Makarov's driver - Status - Unknown. One of the terrorists who assists Makarov in "No Russian" and one of the getaway drivers.
- Lev - Status - K.I.A. One of the terrorists who assists Makarov in "No Russian". Killed by either the FSB or Alexei Borodin on the runway.
- Kiril - Status - K.I.A. One of the terrorists who assists Makarov in "No Russian". Killed by either the FSB or Alexei Borodin on the runway.
- Viktor "Volk" Khristenko - Status - Alive (P.O.W.) Makarov's bomb-maker, hiding in Paris. A large land battle was fought to ensure his safety for interrogation. Responsible for dealings with Waraabe and chemicals released in Paris and London.
- Waraabe - Status - K.I.A. Leader of the Somali Militia. Served as one of the Makarov's foreign contacts through Volk, and assisted in transporting the chemical weaponry. Killed by John Price in "Return to Sender".
- Major Petrov - Status - Unknown. A heard character that appears in the mission "Eye of The Storm". He can be heard speaking to the Czech people over public address system. It is unknown whether or not he is the same Major from the mission "Cliffhanger" from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.
- Alexi - Status - K.I.A. Member of the Inner Circle and probably commander of the cell in Prague Castle. Seen talking to Makarov about Alena Vorshevsky in "Stronghold". Killed by John Price in the explosion of a frag grenade.
Acts of Terrorism
- 2001 - To start off Makarov's reign of terror, Imran Zakhaev orders Makarov to bomb a Moscow city bus. The mission succeeded with 29 people killed and 19 injured.
- 2001 - Used a modified London Underground train filled with explosives to bomb Piccadilly Circus, killing 407.
- 2001 - Massacre at the GUM department store in Moscow, 87 dead.
- 2002 - Hijacking of Greek oil tanker in the Mediterranean Sea. Hellenic Navy boarding party along with two crew members killed before $3 million ransom is paid.
- 2002 - Murder of three Russian infantry soldiers.
- 2002 - $1.5 million stolen from a ZBV bank.
- 2003 - Repression of North Caucasus-based, pro-Western nationalist groups. Assassinations of political leaders, arson, and bombing of opposition parties. Murder of Moscow-based journalist Ilya Lovitch, who was investigating political crimes in the region.
- 2003 - Bombing of several government buildings in Kazakhstan, 245 dead.
- 2003 - Commander of two Kreigler Airliner hijackings, 378 dead, including eight of his own men.
- 2004 - Robbed an HBS bank in Istanbul, Turkey.
- 2004 - Kidnapping of 15 college students from Russia, five killed.
- 2004 - Bombing of two embassies in Africa, 28 dead, 48 injured.
- 2005 - Hold-up of armored truck in Moscow, stole three million rubles (approx. $100,000). Three security guards dead.
- 2005 - Hijacking of cruise ship in the Baltic Sea, tortured US passengers until $5 million ransom was paid.
- 2006 - Robbed the Russian State Postal and Banking Service Depot of 32 million rubles (approx. $1.2 million).
- 2006 - Murder of famous British designer Rob Millington.
- 2006 - Murder of three US airmen based in Turkmenistan.
- 2006 - Helped coordinate attacks by Janjaweed militias and Sudanese military against rebels. Implicated in human rights abuse.
- 2007 - Capture and beheading of Mossad attaché to Ukraine who was investigating Makarov's links to Islamic extremists.
- 2007 - Assassination of Pakistani politician Hasni Al'Bura.
- 2007 - Bombing of Russia-Germany gas pipeline in Belarus because Gasneft refused to pay a fee to prevent “disruption to service”.
- 2007 - Robbed $15 million worth of diamonds and other gemstones from a Siberian mining company.
- 2008/2009 - A Swedish furniture store in a shopping mall located in St. Petersburg is bombed, 100 killed or wounded.
- 2008 - FSB vehicle ambushed, five agents dead.
- 2008 - Abduction and murder of SibGaz owner's wife and daughter.
- 2009 - The offices of a U.S. oil company in Baku were bombed, three people dead.
- 2009 - Bomb plot against English-speaking school in Moscow (unsuccessful).
- 2009 - Soccer stadium in Moscow is rigged with explosives (unsuccessful). Authorities burst a pipe to halt the match, denying publicity to Makarov.
- 2009 - Trafficking of over $2,100,000 worth of weapons, drugs, and people.
- 2011 (Day 3) - Gives Al-Asad the order of detonating a nuclear device, killing approx. 30,000 US Marines and an unknown number of others.
- 2016 (August 12 (Day 3)) - Massacre at Zakhaev International Airport in Moscow, which provoked the Russo-American War (234 civilians, security personnel, and FSB members killed; total of 243 people killed according to Return to Sender cutscene)
- 2016 (October 3) - Abduction of Russian President Vorskevsky, unknown number of FSO agents dead.
- All of these attacks brings Makarov's death toll to over 31,641, maybe more depending on the number in the boarding party and how many political figures he killed in north Caucasus.
Mainly involved in moving women from the poorer parts of Eastern Europe to Western Europe with promises of well paid jobs, only to be forced into prostitution across Europe, the Persian Gulf States, and the United States.
Uses connections in Russian and Ukranian banking to clean money earned in drugs and weapons dealing done mainly through transfers to Cyprus, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, and Syria.
Provides muscle and safe passage of the Russian section of the Herdin Trail from the poppy fields of Afghanistan.
- Main article: Vladimir Makarov/Newspaper Excerpts
During the introduction of "No Russian", several newspaper pages concerning Makarov, from “The World Today” and others, are flashed on the screen. Some paragraphs or whole articles are just repeated on other newspapers.
Some newspaper clippings are also found in Makarov's safehouse, mentioning a bombing of Piccadilly Circus by Makarov, his views about Zakhaev and Russia taking notice of the Airport Massacre.
- Main article: Vladimir Makarov/Quotes
- Makarov's left eye is green and his right is blue, due to Heterochromia iridum.
- Oddly however, both of his eyes were green in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3, even if his dossier mentioned the differences of his eye colors.
- Even more strange, his Call of Duty: Ghosts DLC model also has same-colored eyes.
- According to Soap's Journal his blood type is A positive.
- The 'Infamy' trailer, which Makarov narrates, was released on his birthday.
- Inside Makarov's bedroom, within the safe-house, there are two books. One is titled Philosophy Politics and Poetry.
- As well as this, there is a picture by Gerard Van Honthorst within the room.
- In the February 2010 issue of Game Informer, Makarov was ranked #4 on "Top 10 Villains of '09".
- In the Redemption trailer, Makarov is seen wearing the same clothes from "No Russian".
- Makarov's initials are "Makarov, V. R." in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, but are "Makarov, V. A." in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
- Makarov is the announcer for the Inner Circle in the multiplayer of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
- Newspaper articles shown at the beginning of "No Russian" describe Makarov as "on par with Al-Qaeda" in terms of the threat he posed to the world.
- ↑ File:Makarov Vows Revenge In Taped Message Article.png
- ↑ File:Makarov profile.jpg.
- ↑ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DuqDk4_MrU0&
- ↑ 4.0 4.1 4.2 No Russian
- ↑ 5.0 5.1 Blood Brothers
- ↑ Game Over
- ↑ Confirmed in Modern Warfare 3
- ↑ File:Makarov Vows Revenge Article.png
- ↑ Loose Ends
- ↑ Team Player