The request to enter Cambodia is again shouted through the megaphone, but the silence remains. Franz looks around and decides that the Grand March is definitely over. But like the editor’s petition to free the political prisoners, they always knew that the Grand March wouldn’t amount to much. The point of the Grand March, the narrator says, is to prove that there are still some people who aren’t afraid. As Franz scans the crowd, he sees one of his friends from the Sorbonne raise his fist into the air in the general direction of Cambodia.
Again, the Grand March accomplishes nothing, except for getting an innocent photographer killed, and it is more about resisting the regime for the sake of resistance. The raised fist of Franz’s friend suggests that this resistance will continue indefinitely, regardless of whether or not it is effective—another example of eternal return within the book.