MANILA – Since its inception in 1981, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has been one of the two main Islamic militant groups in the Philippines, fighting for the independence of the Muslims in southern Philippines. However, facing declining membership and influence in the region, the MILF officially released a press statement last Tuesday claiming that it has changed its name to the Moro Emancipation Nation (MEN).
Party spokesman Von al Haq claimed that, increasingly in recent years, people are no longer taking the movement seriously, simply because of its embarrassing acronym. “The MILF brand has lost its sense of fear. Twenty years ago, the phrase ‘the MILFs are coming!’ struck terror within the hearts of every Filipino. Now, it merely causes people to giggle and in some cases, become awkwardly aroused”.
The term MILF, now mainly used to describe attractive middle aged women, was popularized by the 1999 movie American pie. Party chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal emotionally told us, “since that movie’s release, he can no longer proudly tell his teenage sons that he is a MILF fighter”, and that he personally issued bounties for Jason Biggs and the other main cast for American Pie.
Even other fellow terrorist organizations and groups had been caught mocking the former MILF’s name. In a December 2005 phone record with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, PIJ leader was caught jokingly calling all MILF members “pussies”, who “suicide bomb like women” and “are majorly lacking in the balls department”.
The MILF promptly voted to ban all forms of communication with the PIJ. In a recent interview with the PIJ, the group has apologized for the leader’s remarks, saying that it “did not expect the MILF to be so sensitive” and that “Islamist groups should support each other in times of trouble”.
The group’s change of name to MEN, “marked a new start for the Moro independence movement”, said vice chairman for political affairs Ghadzali Jaafar. The MEN is now carefully advertising to emphasize their virility and manliness to future recruits.
Advertising posters of party leaders in snowboarding and ice climbing gear, Photoshopped to pictures of the Alps and Rockies, have been posted in cities around the southern Philippines island of Mindanao. The group has even released several gangster rap albums in Arabic, English and several southern Filipino languages, explaining that rap is now hip and allows them to connect with the youths.
Jaafar says that this new campaign has been “an astounding success”. Within the first several days, party applications doubled from this time last year.
The group has also moved their official website and fansite to Philippines-based xtreme-men.ph, as its previous website milf.ph, was recently acquired by a coalition of twenty Filipino pornography producers for 5 million USD.
With MILF now MEN, Jaafar is optimistic towards its future, saying that the creation of an independent Moro nation is a simply “matter of time” and that people of the future shall remember the MEN’s contributions to freedom and liberty.