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All warfare is based on deception. For years, the West's hypocrisy has made the world a battlefield. The corrupt talk; while our brothers and sons spill their own blood. But deceit cuts both ways. The bigger the lie, the more likely people will believe it, and when a nation cries for vengeance, the lie spreads like a wildfire. The fire builds, devouring everything in its path. Our enemies believe that they alone dictate the course of history, but all it takes is the will of a single man.
~ Vladimir Makarov, in the introduction to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
Remember - no Russian.
~ Makarov to his men just before the airport massacre – and his most famous line.

Vladimir Makarov (Russian: Владимир Макаров), or simply referred to as Makarov, is the main antagonist of the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare trilogy. He serves as a minor character in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (as well as the 2016 remaster of the same name), the secondary antagonist of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 and the main antagonist of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.

He is the one of the leaders of the Russian Ultranationalists and the successor of Imran Zakhaev, as well as the founder of the Inner Circle and the arch-nemesis of Captain John Price. He is a sadistic terrorist leader who is best known for triggering World War III between the Western Civilization and Russia by massacring an entire airport in Moscow, in an attempt to restore the power of the Soviet Union.

He was voiced by Roman Varshavsky.



According to information in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, Vladimir Makarov graduated from the Frunze Military Academy as an officer in the Russian Army first serving as a paratrooper along with his longtime best friend, Yuri. Later on in his career he made it into 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.

Eventually, the U.N held an inquiry investigating charges of human rights abuse. Makarov's name appeared at the top of the list presented by an EU Investigation panel. The inquiry was ultimately 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 to leave the armed forces. Makarov would soon bring his former military training to bear, focusing his efforts in many criminal and terrorist enterprises, such as kidnapping, human trafficking of women, hijackings, money laundering, terror bombings of military/civilian targets, drug trafficking, assassinations, etc. At some point, the leader of the burgeoning Ultranationalist Party, Imran Zakhaev, took notice and allowed Makarov a position within the anti-western movement. It is said that Makarov was "kept in check" by Zakhaev during this partnership. Zakhaev was eventually killed by British and Loyalist forces during the course of the Russian Civil War and the Ultranationalist party splintered. Makarov's resources and contacts within the criminal world allowed him to assume control of a large portion of the Ultranationalist party.

According to newspaper clippings in his safe-house, Vladimir held up photos of Bravo Six (Gaz, Griggs, Price and Soap) and declared they were responsible for the death of Imran Zakhaev. Most likely, it is for this reason that he holds a grudge against Price and Soap. Included were news articles showing Makarov responsible for terrorist attacks in London and Moscow; threatening the removal of the Ultranationalist party controlling Russia.

Modern Warfare 2

Makarov indirectly becomes the conduit for General Shepherd's recruitment plan. After Shepherd sends CIA agent Joseph Allen (under the alias Alexi Borodin) to Russia, Makarov accepts Allen, though he finds out the latter's undercover identity. To reveal Allen's undercover work, Makarov launches a brutal terrorist attack on Zakhaev International Airport with other Ultranationalist extremists. After fighting their way through FSB forces, Makarov and his men escape. However, Makarov shoots Allen with an M9 and leaves him for dead, instigating a war between Russia and the United States.

Eventually, Makarov and his men are tracked down to two possible locations, leading Task Force 141 to investigate. Gary Sanderson and Ghost obtain intelligence on Makarov, but both are killed by Shepherd who is trying to avenge his 30,000 Marines by taking down Makarov himself and to soon initiate a major strike on Russia with a planned strong military force and bury any evidence of his foul play. He and his forces are attacked by Shepherd's Shadow Company in an aircraft boneyard. Makarov is then contacted by Captain Price, who asks for intel on Shepherd, saying the famous phrase "The enemy of my enemy is my friend". Realizing that his only hope for survival was getting rid of Shepherd, Makarov agrees to tell Price of Shepherd's location, saying "I'll see you in hell", to which Price responds "Looking forward to it. Give my regards to Zakhaev if you get there first". Although no outcome of the battle between Shadow Company and Makarov's forces is given, Makarov survived and again went into hiding.

Airport Massacre and Global Conflict

That was no message. This is a message. The American thought he could deceive us. When they find that body... all of Russia will cry for war.
~ Makarov after the massacre and just as he kills Joseph Allen in order to incriminate America.
As a reference of the past, Makarov and his Inner Circle operatives launched their brutal 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 believed that Makarov knows Borodin is an undercover CIA operative. So, 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 a full scale war between the United States and Russia. Incidentally, this war would personally benefit General Shepherd. Yuri, seemingly aware with Makarov's true plan, tried to stop the planned massacre by alerting 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 blood loss from his wound. Eventually, he was rescued and had been holding a deep grudge on Makarov for his betrayal and his violent acts against his own countrymen ever since.

Modern Warfare 3

Makarov returns in Modern Warfare 3, seeking the launch codes for the nuclear warheads from the president of Russia, Boris Vorshevsky. He kidnaps the president and his daughter, Alena, in an attempt to obtain the launch codes out of him. Meanwhile, he plans to detonate chemical weapons that will poison some of Europe's biggest cities (i.e Paris, London, Hamburg, etc) and launches a military invasion on the continent with the goal of Russia being its supreme ruler. When Price plans an assassination attempt on him, Makarov kills a trusted ally of Price, Russian Loyalist Sargent Kamarov, including his closest friend, S.A.S. Captain John 'Soap' MacTavish (who was also Price's protege).


Goodbye, Captain Price.
~ Vladimir Makarov's final words just before attempting to kill John Price, only to be killed by him after killing Yuri.
After the end of World War 3, Makarov was hiding in the Dubai Hotel. Captain Price and Yuri caught wind of his location and attacked the hotel. Makarov attempted to escape via helicopter, however, Price took the helicopter down. On the rooftop of the hotel, Makarov was about to execute Price when Yuri shot him. Makarov survived the shot and then killed Yuri. Angered by the loss of another ally and friend, Price tackled Makarov down and started to beat him before wrapping 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. After over five years of spreading death, chaos, war and destruction to millions of innocent people, Vladimir Makarov was finally dead.


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 a country, or any set of ideals. He trades blood for money.
~ General Shepherd describing to Joseph Allen about Vladimir Makarov's nature.
Vladimir Makarov was a terrorist that is defined by his lack of empathy, sadism, ruthlessness, psychopathy and ambition. It has been implied by Yuri that prior to the assassination attempt on Zakhaev, Makarov was more sympathetic. However, as Yuri later pointed out, the power that Zakhaev rewarded him with for saving his life also corrupted Makarov to the point of him being the most dangerous and intimidating Ultranationalist the world had ever known. Also, it is possible that Zakhaev kept him "in check" due to being aware of his true nature.

Makarov was highly hypocritical and jingoistic as he believed that massacring an entire airport in his home country would further machinate in restoring it to its former "glory" in the Soviet Union. In his eyes, anyone who didn't share his beliefs/madness, it would be marked as the enemy. Makarov had no faith in fellow Ultranationalist President Boris Vorshevsky as he viewed as stubborn, weak and unwilling to make the "necessary" steps to rebuild Russia's higher power. Makarov believed that he was a part of a greater purpose in the "changing world" due to enacting World War III, blinded by the belief that it would further influence his plans.

He also notably held Zakhaev in high regard to the point of see him as a true hero of Russia. It is this idolization that led him to view Vorshevsky as everything that dishonors Zakhaev's legacy and mission. After his death, he went to great lengths to avenge his death, including killing his murderer "Soap" MacTavish, and attempting to kill Captain Price. He even began trying to restart his mission while also fuelling his own goals.


  • Vasquez (Caused)
  • Paul Jackson (Caused)
  • "Deadly" Pelayo (Caused)
  • Joseph Allen
  • Vasili Zhukov (Caused)
  • Pavel Morozov (Caused)
  • Bogdan Sokolov (Caused)
  • Anya Kovaleva (Caused)
  • Leonid Pudovkin
  • Andrei Harkov 
  • Kamarov (Caused)
  • John "Soap" MacTavish (Caused)
  • "Sandman" (Caused)
  • "Truck" (Caused)
  • "Grinch" (Caused)
  • Yuri
  • 30,000 United States Marine Corps soldiers (Caused)
  • Numerous counts of unnamed people (Caused and Direct)

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 and killed 29 people and injured 19 more.
  • 2001 - Used a modified London Underground train filled with explosives to bomb Piccadilly Circus, killing 407.
  • 2001 - Massacre at GUM mall in Moscow, 87 dead.
  • 2002 - Hijack of Greek oil tanker in the Mediterranean Sea. Greek 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 high 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.
  • 2004 - Kidnapping of 15 college students from Russia, five dead.
  • 2004 - Bombing of two embassies in Africa, 28 dead 48 injured.
  • 2005 - Hold-up of billion trucks in Moscow, stole three million rubles. Three security guards dead.
  • 2005 - Hijacking of cruise ship in the Baltic Sea, tortured US passengers until $5 million ransom is paid.
  • 2006 - Robbed the Russian State Postal and Banking Service Depot of 32 million rubles.
  • 2006 - Murder of famous British designer Rob Millington.
  • 2006 - Murder of three U.S. 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 attache to Ukraine who was investigating Makarov's links to Islamic extremists.
  • 2007 - Assassination of Pakistani politician Hasni Al'Bura.
  • 2007 - Blowing up of Russia-Germany gas pipeline in Belarus because of Gasneft refusing to pay a fee to prevent “disruption to service”.
  • 2007 - Robbing of $15 million worth of diamonds, gems and stones from a Siberian mining company.
  • 2008 - 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 - Shopping mall bomb blows up Swedish furniture store in St. Petersburg, one hundred shoppers killed or wounded.
  • 2009 - Bomb plot against English-speaking school in Moscow foiled.
  • 2009 - Soccer stadium in Moscow is rigged with explosives. 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.
  • Operations in Rwanda, Sierra Leone, and Kosovo (No Russian cutscene).
  • 2011 - Detonates a nuclear device, killing 30,000 U.S. Marines and countless others.
  • 2016 - Massacre at Zakhaev International Airport in Moscow, which provoked the Russo-American war (234 civilians, security, and FSB killed {total of 237 people killed - according to Return to Sender cutscene})
  • 2016 - Abduction of Russian President Vorshevsky, unknown number of FSO agents dead.

In other media

How Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Should Have Ended

Makarov appears in HISHE (How It Should Have Ended) animated parody video. One of his squadmates goes to the wrong floor in which there are Nazi zombies before closing the door and going to the correct floor. Joseph Allen points his weapon to the people, however he was arrested along with Makarov and his men. In the jail cell, after Allen hits the wall with his weapon, he showed his true identity to Makarov and his squadmates and shot them dead before continuing to hit the wall to escape the prison.


S nami Bog (God is with us).
~ Makarov to his troops before the massacre at Zakhaev International Airport.
Captain Price. Ad zhdet tebya (Hell awaits you).
~ Makarov to Price as attempts to kill him by blowing up Kamarov.
Yuri, wake up. Zakhaev wouldn't want you to miss this. This deal will generate millions for our cause. Money can buy many things. Even power. The road to our future begins here, my friend.
~ Makarov to Yuri during the latter's flashback to 1996.
Today, we show the world our true strength. Perhaps it will give you some as well.
~ Makarov speaking to Yuri during the latter's flashback to 2011.
Understand, Yuri: this is only the beginning.
~ Makarov after watching the nuclear bomb kill 30,000 Marines.
I know what you have done, Yuri. I know what you have told them. My friend. My ally. My betrayer. What happens here today, will change the world forever. Nothing can stop this. Not even you.
~ Makarov during Yuri's flashbacks prior to the massacre.
Like it ended for Captain MacTavish? Tell me, Price, how long did it take him to die? I've destroyed your world piece by piece. It's only a matter of time until I find you.
~ Makarov taunting Price about Soap's death.



  • He is the most evil character from the Modern Warfare series, being rivaled by Khaled Al-Asad and Imran Zakhaev.
  • Makarov has repeatedly been named one of the best Call of Duty villains alongside Raul Menendez, and one of the greatest villains in video games history.
  • It is possible to kill him BEFORE Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3. This can be performed in the Modern Warfare Remastered version of the game. However, this is considered non-canon as the official canon of his death takes place in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3.
    • But, if you do kill Makarov in the Modern Warfare Remastered level "One Shot, One Kill", you will gain an achievement/trophy, 'Time Paradox'.
  • Makarov is the overarching villain of the Modern Warfare trilogy because if he hadn't caused World War III, the trilogy wouldn't have happened. Plus, he was around longer and had a bigger impact on the trilogy than any other villain, and he also had bigger plans than anyone else.
  • He was responsible for the deaths of approximately 31,000 people.
  • Although Makarov never physically appeared in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, he was directly responsible for the nuke scene that killed 30,000 men. This event was also the catalyst that caused General Shepherd's motives in Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.
  • While his initials have been referenced in Modern Warfare 2 as "Makarov, V. R.", his initials was then slated as "Makarov, V. A." in Modern Warfare 3. However, the latter was most likely misspelled since the Ukrainian ghost town Pripyat was also misspelled as "Prypiat".


           Call of Duty Villains

Nazi Party
Dr. Edward Richtofen | Heinrich Amsel | Friedrich Steiner | Metz | Carl Heinrich | Peter Straub

Russian Ultranationalists
Imran Zakhaev | Viktor Zakhaev | Vladimir Makarov

Khaled Al-Asad

Inner Circle
Vladimir Makarov | Volk | Waraabe | Alejandro Rojas

Shadow Company
General Shepherd

Red Army
Nikita Dragovich | Lev Kravchenko | Daniel Clarke | Nikolai Belinski

Cordis Die
Raul Menendez | DeFalco | Javier Salazar | Mullah Rahmaan | Manuel Noriega

Inter-Services Intelligence
ISI Leader

Strategic Defense Coalition
Tian Zhao

Gabriel T. Rorke

Joseph Chkheidze | Pierre Danois

Atlas Corporation
Jonathan Irons

Common Defense Pact

Settlement Defense Front
Salen Kotch | Akeel Min Riah | Caleb Thies | Bradley Fillion

Cosmic Silverback | Corvus | Juggernaut | Cryptids | George A. Romero | Jacob Hendricks | Fidel Castro | Yuri Zavoyski | Gersh | Zombies | Apothicon | Shadowman | Jumping Jacks | Brutus | Willard Wyler | Mephistopheles | Savannah Mason-Meyer