Neoliberalism and the Moro Struggle in Southern Philippines

Regletto Aldrich Imbong

Abstract


This paper aims to elucidate the Moro resistance via a critique of neoliberalism. Taking the views of various scholars, I will argue that neoliberalism is reducible to three themes: liberalization, privatization, and deregulation. Neoliberalism with its themes has highly conditioned both the current Islamic resistance the world over, and specifically, Moro resistance in southern Philippines. By forwarding this position, I will be able to clarify two important points. First, I wish to demystify current propaganda (first advanced by the American imperialists) that the Moro struggle is a Muslim or Islamic struggle. Delinking the notions of Moro struggle and Islam, this paper shall hopefully dispel the culture of Islamophobia common among uninformed Filipinos. Second, I hope to highlight the necessity of the Moro resistance to assume a political character, one which resists neoliberal capitalism. This suggests a critical appreciation of national policies, both past and current, which unfairly favor foreign multinational and transnational companies at the expense of the interests of the Moros and other indigenous peoples in southern Philippines. This characterization of the Moro resistance as a political struggle could have crucial implications to both the ongoing peace process and the need to establish a solid unity among the Moro peoples. At the heart of all these is the need to remedy and rectify historical maladies rooted on socio-economic exploitation perpetuated by foreign powers against the Moros.

Keywords


Moros, muslim, MILF, MNLF, neoliberalism, neocolonialism, terrorism, Maute, peace process, Mindanao

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