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General Shepherd

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Lieutenant General Hershel von Shepherd III, also known as General Shepherd and Shepherd, was a U.S. Army officer in charge of Task Force 141 and the hidden main antagonist of the 2009 video game, Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

He is voiced by Lance Henriksen.


Second Russian Civil War

Before the events of Modern Warfare 2, Shepherd commanded 30,000 Marines and the U.S. invasion force in the Middle East in 2011. Unfortunately, Shepherd watched in shock as the nuclear bomb detonated in the capital city and killed his fellow Marines, including most of his invasion force involved in the battle.

Planning a full scale war

With the lost of 30,000 Marines under his command, Shepherd sought new ways to restore his country in global power while secretly attempting to restore his reputation as military commander. In the battle for occupying Afghanistan, Shepherd needed an enemy as part of his plan to increase the U.S. military. After hearing Vladimir Makarov's increased terrorist attacks throughout Europe, Shepherd believed that Makarov's presence would be a mark to indirectly help and bring his desire changes. Now he had Task Force 141, Shepherd sent former U.S. Army Ranger-turned CIA operative, Private First Class Joseph Allen, undercover in Moscow under an alias, "Alexei Borodin," to infiltrate Makarov's Inner Circle as they planned to attack Zakhaev International Airport. Unfortunately, Makarov knew of Allen's undercover status and he killed him in order to place the blame solely on America for the airport massacre, much to Shepherd's delight. As a result of the sudden Russian military invasion on the U.S. soil, the government appointed Shepherd to lead the defense of his country, setting the stage for his revenge on the Ultranationalists.

Betrayal of Task Force 141 and death

Sometime after the rescue of Captain John Price, Shepherd planned a personal war against the Ultranationalists and anyone who knew of Joseph Allen. Shepherd sent Roach and Ghost to collect any intelligence related to Makarov before mercilessly executing and gave them a sadistic funeral pyre as Shepherd's elite private army soaked them in gas and he lit them on fire with his cigar. Then, his men began their plan to kill Makarov's men and the rest of Task Force 141. At the vehicle boneyard in Afghanistan, Makarov revealed Shepherd's command base, "Site Hotel Bravo," to Price before he and Soap escaping in Nikolai's C-130 Hercules. After the rescue, Price and Soap had no allies they could trust with and decided to go on a suicide mission to kill Shepherd for betraying Task Force 141. With his command collapsed, Shepherd tried to escape in a Pave Low helicopter, but it was shot down by Price as he got in. Shepherd escaped the crash site and pinned MacTavish down. The renegade general then told Soap of the past events before attempting to execute him. Price saved Soap and the two fought. Just when Shepherd was about to beat Price to death, Soap threw the knife Shepherd pinned him with into his left eye, killing him and avenging the deaths of Task Force 141 members.


Shepherd was later buried at the Arlington National Cemetery and he was called a "War Hero" by many people at that time and, unfortunately, Soap and Price were declared war criminals. However, their names were cleared when Price and Yuri (Soap wasn't there because he was killed) conducted a joint operation with their American Delta Force counterparts to rescue the President of Russia, Boris Vorshevsky, and his daughter Alena from a diamond mine in Siberia, restoring the President's goal of developing peace and friendship between the United States, Russia and NATO.


We are the most powerful military force in the history of man. Every fight is our fight. Because what happens over here, matters over there. We don't get to sit one out. Learning to use the tools of modern warfare is the difference between the prospering of your people, and utter destruction. We can't give you freedom. But we can give you the know-how to acquire it. And that, my friends, is worth more than a whole army base of steel. Sure it matters who's got the biggest stick, but it matters a helluva lot more who's swinging it. This is a time for heroes. A time for legends. History is written by the victors. Let's get to work.
~ Shepherd describes the military might of his homeland in the cutscene of "Team Player".
Five years ago, I lost 30,000 men in the blink of an eye... and the world just f**kin' watched. Tomorrow, there will be no shortage of volunteers, no shortage of patriots. I know you understand.
~ Shepherd reveals the past events as he prepares to kill MacTavish in the final mission of MW2, Endgame.



  • Makarov is the Big Bad in the Modern Warfare series due to being the cause of the events of the series; however, General Shepherd takes the role of the main antagonist in Modern Warfare 2 because he had bigger plans than anyone else.
  • Shepherd shares many similarities with General Hummel from The Rock, as both were disgraced U.S. military officials who went rogue and turned against their own respective governments to avenge millions of their fallen comrades. Hummel was portrayed by Ed Harris, who would later voice a protagonist Jason Hudson from Call of Duty: Black Ops.

Call of Duty Villains

Nazis: Dr. Edward Richtofen | Heinrich Amsel | Friedrich Steiner

Russian Ultranationalists: Imran Zakhaev | Victor Zakhaev | Vladimir Makarov

OpFor: 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

Federation: Gabriel T. Rorke

KVA: Joseph Chkheidze | Pierre Danois

Atlas Corporation: Jonathan Irons

Common Defense Pact

Settlement Defense Front: Salen Kotch | Akeel Min Riah

Cosmic Silverback | Corvus | Cryptids | George A. Romero | Jacob Hendricks | Pentagon Thief | Zombies

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