Things Fall Apart

what is the evidence is there that the clans do not understand the white man's way of life?

from chapter 15

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The clans understand the white man is a threat but I don't think they comprehend just what kind of damage the whites can inflict. They kill the white scout and tie his "iron horse" (Bicycle) to a tree. This of course becomes a sign to the whites of insurgency. The tribes do not understand the retribution in store for them.