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4066I UNIVERSAL HISTORY-THE MODERN WORLD,

view. European observers were inclined

to point out that it seemed as difficult for

American states to agree as for European

states to work in harmony.

Francisco Villa, the once-celebrated Mexican bandit and revolutionist, was ambushed

by enemies on the morning of July 20, 1923,

while traveling in his automobile from

Parral to Guanajuato. With him were his

secretary, a chauffeur, and two bodyguards.

All were riddled with bullets, and for a

time the assassins escaped. Five widows

laid claim to his estate, while his followers,

taking sides with one or the other, threatened to create disorders. The Government

announced that it would administer his

ranch in behalf of his children, said to

number about twenty. The mystery surrounding his death was ultimately cleared

up by the arrest of Jesus Salas, a member

of the Durango legislature. Salas confessed

that he had planned the killing and pleaded

in justification that he considered it his

duty to rid the world of such a monster.

His accomplices consisted of neighbors

from the small town of El Oro who had

suffered losses of members of their families

when Villa captured the place and murdered

many of its leading citizens.

Though not approving the methods of

assassination, Americans generally received

the news of Villa's death with satisfaction,

for they had not forgotten his many bloody

crimes, including the famous raid upon

Columbus, New Mexico. Though occasionally he performed acts of generosity, he

was in reality little better than a bloodthirsty tiger in human form, and was

guilty of scores of acts of brutal violence.

Even his own followers and friends never

felt secure against some sudden up flaring

of his ungovernable temper. His death was

generally considered to render the continuance of peace in Mexico more likely, for

although he had retired to an estate granted

him by the Government upon condition of