The reader sympathizes with the character of Snowball. Snowball gets treated with disrespect even after his triumphant military behavior. He led the Battle of the Cowshed and fought majestically, even after suffering a gunshot wound. He is a well-respected leader until Napoleon runs him off the farm:
Snowball shows his expert use of military strategy during the attack—which becomes known as the Battle of the Cowshed—and is later awarded a medal. Snowball also comes up with the idea of building a windmill to produce electricity.
Napoleon is a selfish tyrant. He is jealous of Snowball. Snowball has great ideas and military strategies that work. Napoleon runs Snowball off the farm. When Snowball is run off the farm, the reader sympathizes greatly with Snowball. Snowball is well-loved and well respected by the reader and the other animals on the farm. Only Napoleon is jealous of Snowball.
Throughout the story, Napoleon tears down Snowball’s reputation. He convinces the other animals that Snowball was a deceiver and desired for the farmer, Mr. Jones, to regain control of the farm. Napoleon takes credit for Snowball’s windmill idea, claiming that Snowball stole it from. In this instance, the reader sympathizes with Snowball because he is treated unfairly.
The political statement that the author is making is that leaders can often become corrupt. Napoleon becomes corrupt. Snowball, like Leon Trotsky, is exiled by Napoleon who represents Stalin:
[Snowball] represents the historical figure of Leon Trotsky. Like Trotsky, who was exiled from Russia by his former partner Stalin, Snowball is eventually run off the farm by Napoleon. After he is gone, Napoleon uses him as a scapegoat, blaming him for everything that goes wrong on the farm. In an allegory of the bloody purge trials that took place in the Soviet Union during the 1930s, the animals confess to scheming in various ways with Snowball for the downfall of the other pigs. Whoever confesses is slaughtered.
The reader is sympathetic with Snowball who is blamed for everything that goes wrong on the farm. Napoleon becomes self-centered. He declares himself sole leader. He does not have the best interests of the animals at heart. He is a tyrant and dictates solely on how the animals will conduct themselves. Napoleon does not care about the animals. His actions cause the reader to sympathize with the animals who suffer at his command, especially with Snowball who has to leave the farm in order to survive.