Killing Vladimir Krasin brought down every terrorist upon President Marshall in response to the gunshots, and he barely escaped with his life down a dumbwaiter to the plane's baggage deck. Finding Krasin's corpse, an enraged Ivan Korshunov instructs his surviving underlings to find Krasin's killer.

Boris Bazylev does exactly that when he investigates the baggage deck a few minutes later and finds not the Secret Service agent Ivan envisioned but the President of the United States. He finds Marshall attempting to contact the White House on a satellite phone, but doesn't actually notice the phone, instead focusing on trying to make Marshall drop Krasin's machine gun and come with him.

Before Boris interrupted him, President Marshall had been in the process of being connected to Vice President Bennett in the White House's situation room. Surprised by Boris, Marshall secretly drops the phone into his jacket pocket without hanging up. Handing over his gun, he surrenders and agrees to go upstairs with his captor. On the way he begins making small talk with the terrorist, telling him about Air Force One's various countermeasures in case it were ever fired upon by enemy jets. Annoyed, Boris tells him to shut up.

But what Boris doesn't know is that the line of the phone in Marshall's pocket is still open, and Bennett and everyone else in the White House is hearing everything they're saying. Suddenly getting what it is that Marshall is secretly ordering her to do, Bennett has word sent to the F-15 fighters which are flying escort for Air Force One despite the terrorist takeover: they are to fire on the President's plane. Lead pilot Colonel Carlton isn't so sure, but he obeys nonetheless, launching a missile at the jumbo jet. As Marshall had hoped, the plane's countermeasures automatically activate. As Ivan and his other men, unaware of the situation down in the baggage area, watch, stunned, the plane's autopilot takes over.

Air Force One deploys decoy flares while simultaneously veering out of the path of Carlton's missile. The missile hits the flares and explodes. Air Force One is unharmed but the shockwave combined with the plane's sudden turn rocks the entire aircraft, making everyone aboard stumble around wildly. Which is exactly the opportunity Marshall wanted!

With Boris disoriented, Marshall spins and attacks him. After relieving the Russian of his weapon, a brutal fistfight follows. This, too, is heard over the phone by the people back at the White House. They listen tensely on the edge of their seats, as Marshall smashes Boris' face through a glass door and into some cartons of milk and orange juice, then gets the dazed villain in a headlock. Boris struggles but, weakened by the blow to his head, quickly succumbs to the President's stranglehold. A snap is heard and Boris goes limp, and drops lifelessly to the floor when the relieved Marshall releases him.