By contrast, Christian settlers regularly obtained legal ownership of the best newly opened lands as well as crop loans and other forms of government assistance.
The new Christian communities became linked to trade centers and to one another by networks of roads while Muslim communities remained relatively isolated.
By contrast, the government services available to Muslims were not only meager compared to those obtained by immigrant Christians but were also fewer than they had received under the colonial regime.
The land laws of the postcolonial government defined all unregistered lands in Mindanao to be public land or military reservations (Gowing 1979).
This was due principally to their possession of both a world religion and an aristocracy.
In line with the popular orientalism of the time and drawing on the experiences of earlier European colonizers in Muslim Southeast Asia, American colonizers often exhibited a certain respect for the "Mohammedanism" they found in the Philippines and did not encourage Christian proselytization among Philippine Muslims.
As one consequence of this attitude, American colonial administrators tended to conglomerate various Muslim ethnolinguistic groups under the single label "Moro" rather than focusing on the "tribal" divisions among them.Philippine Muslims and the new Philippine Republic In 1946, a severely war-damaged Philippines received its formal independence and the new Philippine Republic continued to pursue the primary policy goal of its predecessor in Mindanao with far greater vigor.Independence brought a tremendous expansion of government-sponsored Christian Filipino immigration from northern provinces to the Muslim South.In the Muslim South, however, pacification took longer to achieve, requiring even harsher methods, while paternalism was also more pronounced.By 1914, "Moroland", as it was most commonly termed by the Americans, was considered fully pacified and civilian colonial rule was finally inaugurated 13 years after its establishment in the rest of the colony.Demographic data from a single municipality--Kapatagan-- in the province of Lanao del Norte in central Mindanao illustrate the scale of the post-war influx of Christian migrants.There were about 24 Christian settlers in the Kapatagan area in 1918.Unfamiliar with the procedures or deterred by the years of uncertainty, the steep processing fees, and the requirement to pay taxes during the interim, many Muslims neither applied for the new lands opened up by government-funded road construction nor filed for legal title to the land they currently occupied (Thomas 1971).For their part, officials and employees of the Bureau of Lands (virtually all of them Christians) were at best inattentive to Muslims.Secondly, unlike tribal Filipinos, Philippine Muslims were overwhelmingly lowlanders and were not exempted from the land registration and individual land ownership policies of the American colonial government.The Bureau of Lands conducted land surveys throughout Muslim areas and processed homestead applications.