In Animal Farm, what makes the Battle of the Windmill against Frederick's men seem different from the Battle of Cowshed?

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

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The two battles in Animal Farm were much different. At the Battle of the Cowshed, Snowball had devised a brilliant battle plan that called for a deliberate retreat, counterattacks and diversionary tactics. The humans were taken by surprise, and the animal victory came easily and with few casualties. The Battle of the Windmill was far different: Although the animals knew an attack was imminent, Napoleon had not devised a battle plan. When the men showed up in larger force and with many guns, they opened fire and the animals hid in terror. It was only the explosion which destroyed the windmill that fueled the animals' anger, causing them to make an all-out attack on the men. They faced the guns bravely this time, and despite many casualties--

A cow, three sheep, and two geese were killed, and nearly everyone was wounded...

the animals again chased the humans from the farm. Although Squealer proclaimed it a victory (and technically it was), even Boxer questioned the announcement.

     "What victory?
     "... they have destroyed the windmill. And we had worked on it for two years!" 

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