How does Napoleon use the memory of the absent snowball to keep the animals in line?
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A rumor begins circulating among the animals that Snowball is sneaking into the farm at night and causing mischief. From then on, the animals attribute any misfortune to Snowball’s interference. Napoleon arranges a public investigation of Snowball’s activities. He surveys the farm and claims to smell Snowball’s scent everywhere. The animals are terrified. That evening, Squealer tells the animals that Snowball now belongs to Mr. Frederick, with whom he is plotting to overtake Animal Farm. He claims that Snowball was collaborating with Mr. Jones from the very beginning and claims to have supporting evidence. Squealer also claims that Snowball intended to get the animals killed in the Battle of the Cowshed. When the animals, including Boxer, protest, Squealer invents yet another lie. He claims that Napoleon cried, “Death to Humanity!” during the battle and bit Mr. Jones in the leg. Boxer continues to protest until Squealer tells him that the news is directly from Napoleon. Boxer replies, “If Comrade Napoleon says it, it must be right” (91). Before leaving, Squealer gives Boxer a nasty look and warns the animals that Snowball’s secret agents are lurking among them.
Four days later, Napoleon calls an assembly. He wears the medals of “Animal Hero, First Class” and “Animal Hero, Second Class,” which he has awarded himself. Napoleon’s dogs drag out of the crowd the four pigs that had opposed the cessation of Sunday meetings. The dogs try to drag Boxer out as well, but he deflects them. The pigs confess that they collaborated with Snowball in destroying the windmill and were planning to help Mr. Frederick overtake Animal Farm. They also confess to knowing of Snowball’s partnership with Mr. Jones for years. Then the dogs tear out the four pigs’ throats. Napoleon asks whether any other animal wishes to confess. Three hens, which had led the hen rebellion, confess that Snowball incited them to revolt in a dream vision. After this, several other animals confess to crimes both great (murder) and small (stealing). Napoleon has them all murdered.