Why was Napoleon a more successful leader in Animal Farm than Snowball?

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bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There is little doubt that Snowball would have been an even greater leader than Napoleon had he been given the chance. Snowball was a brave and intelligent leader who always placed the welfare of his fellow animals above all else. His plan for the windmill would have not only supplied the farm with a means to improve production for a financial profit, but it would also have reduced the animals' work day and provided them with greater comforts. He had the support of the animals, and the vote which would have decided the ultimate leader of the farm would have gone to Snowball. However, Napoleon's ruthlessness and thirst for power far exceeded Snowball's, and his decision to unleash his pack of dogs on Snowball just before the important vote proved to be a timely one. With all opposition out of the way, Napoleon initiated a dictatorial style that was absolute, and the animals had little choice but to follow his directives.