Well, there it is. EA has announced that it’s changing the name of “the bad guys” in Medal of Honor from the Taliban (which, incidentally, merely means “students” in Pashto—I know this because I read it in a book) to the “Opposing Force.” If you ask me, “Opposing Force” sounds like the name for a stable of heels in pro-wrestling. “Look out, Opposing Force has arrived at the arena!”
Now, we all know “why” EA had to do this (constant pressure from the media, not wanting to look like US military-hating cads in the midst of a mid-term election, etc.), but what’s the official reason?
Here you go, in the words of Greg Goodrich, the game’s executive producer:
In the past few months, we have received feedback from all over the world regarding the multiplayer portion of Medal of Honor. We’ve received notes from gamers, active military, and friends and family of servicemen and women currently deployed overseas. The majority of this feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. For this, the Medal of Honor team is deeply appreciative.
However, we have also received feedback from friends and families of fallen soldiers who have expressed concern over the inclusion of the Taliban in the multiplayer portion of our game. This is a very important voice to the Medal of Honor team. This is a voice that has earned the right to be listened to. It is a voice that we care deeply about. Because of this, and because the heartbeat of Medal of Honor has always resided in the reverence for American and Allied soldiers, we have decided to rename the opposing team in Medal of Honor multiplayer from Taliban to Opposing Force.
While this change should not directly affect gamers, as it does not fundamentally alter the gameplay, we are making this change for the men and women serving in the military and for the families of those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice – this franchise will never willfully disrespect, intentionally or otherwise, your memory and service.
To all who serve – we appreciate you, we thank you, and we do not take you for granted. And to the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines currently serving overseas, stay safe and come home soon.
I fully expect a mod (at least for the PC version) that reverts the name back to Taliban.
Not at all surprised. In fact, I’d be shocked if the game isn’t changed from a first-person shooter set in Afghanistan to a college football tailgating simulator before its release on the 12th.