Monday, November 13, 2006

Rebranding Works for the Taliban


KABUL, Afghanistan
- The incumbent administration in the White House is famous for its catchy slogans especially in ultimatums to enemies. Favourites include "You're either with us or against us", "Unleashing shock and awe", and "Dahdah dah dah daaah, I'm lovin' it." In October 2001, the U.S. gave an ultimatum to the Taliban government of Afghanistan - "Hand over OBL or face the wrath of Kahn". Initial Taliban memorandum leaked around the time indicated a certain level of confusion over the "wrath of Kahn" comment. A senior Taliban Joint Chiefs of Staff committee concluded that the "wrath of Kahn" was actually a typographical error and referred to local baker, Amatullah Khan of 27 Burkha Street, Kabul. It was decided by the Taliban high command, that since the only weapons Amatullah Khan owned were a tandoori oven and a kebab skewer, the threat could be neutralised, and the U.S. ultimatum refused. This misunderstanding proved costly for the Taliban government, when the U.S. reduced Afghanistan to rubble with sustained carpet bombing, and the government toppled. But now they're making a comeback with new tactics. And although news reports seem to suggest the tactics of suicide bombing and guerilla warfare, the real reason behind the Taliban's second coming seems to be... corporate rebranding.

Taliban spokesman, Mohabbat Ali Khan, explained: "After the U.S. bombings and invasion back in 2001, we had to retreat and rethink our strategy. We realised after the "Kahn" fiasco, that there was a real need for us to concentrate on effective communication and marketing, to the wider world. There was also a few PR-costly incidents of over-zealous stewards
who had been beating women for watering their lawn, and banning kites and satellite TV. We undertook a thorough investigation and it emerged that they were actually illegal Kazakh contract workers, not Afghans. I don't think I need to go into too much detail about Kazakhs- everyone's seen the Borat film, you reach your own conclusions."

"That's why,
" explained Mohabbat Ali Khan "we undertook a
corporate branding programme and hired U.S. PR firm, and it's done us a world of good." Gone are the trademark Suzuki pickup trucks with Cadillac Escalades in their place. Also gone are the traditional Afghan shalwar kameez to be replaced by sharp designer business suits and quality Italian shoes. The black turbans remain to distinguish themselves as Taliban but they now sport corporate logos on the front. "We found that the turbans were big enough for advertising space, and we've had multinationals lining up to sponsor us" chuckled Mohabbat Ali pointing to the "Just do it" logo plastered on his turban. "We're also developing a clothing and footwear line, under the name "Tali-BAM!. "We're trying to reconnect with the people of Afghanistan and show them that its cool to be Taliban, and it doesn't mean ranting and barbarity, but hip, cool, and trendy".

As well as attracting foreign investment, the rebranding project has helped their image with the local population too. Fifteen year-old teenager, Allah-Pyaara Khan, enthusiastically waits for the Taliban's new flagship sneaker being released in spring 2007: "They new
Gee-Had Ones look awesome. Everyone wants a pair. They're not out for a couple months, but my uncle in Pakistan works at the factory where they're being produced so I might be able to get some early. My friends are going to be so jealous!"

Local farmer, Tikka Khan, agreed that the Taliban had changed. "To be honest, they weren't as bad as everyone made out in the first place. Sure they didn't allow
my daughter to go to school, and they told me my beard had to be double fist length, when normally I only have it one and a quarter fist length, but they did bring peace and security to the region. But now, they've definitely improved. They've agreed my beard can be one and a quarter length, and that's the most important thing. Oh, and my farm is now sponsored by America." gesturing to the Starbucks logo branded on his prize cow.

The British Armed Forces stationed in Afghanistan admit the rebranding is hampering their efforts in combatting the Taliban. "We're trying hard to tell the Afghan people that the Taliban ar
e barbaric, uncivilised dead-enders. But when they turn up with their smart clothes, fast cars, and their skinny mocha lattes, with burkha babes in tow, its an uphill struggle." And with slight irritation, General Thomas Poshbrittington of the British Army says "We try our best to fight the Taliban, but they keep trying to coordinate with us, and their corporate sponsor camera crews keep getting in the way. It's a real nuisance, when in the middle of battle, a Taliban commander comes up to you, and asks to do "that take" again, because his turban wasn't on straight. I mean this is not how you conduct a war, is it?"

Mohabbat Ali Khan talks excitedly about future projects in the pipeline, "Yeah, the British Army have been really great, but we're hoping to do something with the Americans soon, a live battle, to be aired during the Superbowl ads. It's going to be a great opportunity for the Taliban to really break out onto the U.S. market. It's going to be great for the Taliban, and great for Afghanistan."

We here at the Mox News Flash condemn the Taliban and their satanic corporate sponsorship.

This Article Was Sponsored by:

"Drink Our Coffee . . . Or We'll Kill You."

4 comments:

Veiled Muslimah said...

LoL, I like.

Keep up the good work. :thumbup:

MuslimZ said...

cute

Ali-Al-Kabob said...

I like eet...now i go make peekture with cow hide and monkey urine to celbrate..yes?!

hebaliciouss..so deliciousss said...

was funny but youve done better jamhan :)