Eventually Salinas can no longer ignore the war. At first, after the United States joins the war they are confident that victory will son be had, but it becomes clear that the Germans are more worthy adversaries than Americans assumed them to be. And as the war goes on, the price of beans skyrockets—they are a valuable commodity and difficult to find. Farmers in Salinas wished they hadn’t sold their beans to Will Hamilton six months ago.
The war, as Will Hamilton predicts, drives up the price of beans. He has, in some sense, tricked farmers out of a great deal of money. This is less than admirable—but Will’s bad intentions do not negate Cal’s good intentions. Good and evil can coexist.