If elephants=leaders, and grass=people under those leaders, what is most painful about this African proverb is that the elephants neither know nor care about the pain they cause to the grass. The warring elephants are too distracted with winning the battle than tending to the ground underneath. Their concern is in their power and position, defending their ground rather than caring for it. The land upon which they tread is merely the platform for them to blow their trunks. They are often oblivious to the suffering in their wake.
If you’re an elephant, use your trunk to water the lawn.