cloak-and-dagger


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cloak-and-dagger

Using or involving secrecy, deception, or espionage, especially the kind portrayed in dramatic depictions of spying. During the Cold War, there were always rumors of the latest cloak-and-dagger tactics being used by spies. I know I said I wanted to meet you in private, but you didn't have to be so cloak-and-dagger about it. A parking garage isn't what I had in mind.

cloak-and-dagger

involving secrecy and plotting. A great deal of cloak-and-dagger stuff goes on in political circles. A lot of cloak-and-dagger activity was involved in the appointment of the director.

cloak-and-dagger

COMMON You use cloak-and-dagger to describe activities, especially dangerous ones, which are done in secret. Now that the Berlin Wall has come down, the cloak-and-dagger world of East-West espionage might appear to be outdated. They met in classic cloak-and-dagger style beside the lake in St James's Park. Note: You can refer to such activities as cloaks and daggers. Working in police intelligence has very little to do with cloaks and daggers — it's mostly about boring reports and endless statistics. Note: You sometimes use this expression to suggest that people are treating these activities in an unnecessarily dramatic way. Note: This expression is taken from the name of a type of 17th century Spanish drama, in which characters typically wore cloaks and fought with daggers or swords.
References in periodicals archive ?
The written confessions of the lovers, interspersed with diary extracts, secret state papers and letters, provide much-needed bite to what might otherwise be a generic cloak-and-dagger romp.
The legends, the business of the hagiographers, begin with his birth: born in a boxcar while his mother was traveling on a train through Siberia; raised in the margins of a nation torn apart by World War II and the Cold War; early recognition in the world-famous school and company of Leningrad's Kirov Ballet; the cloak-and-dagger defection from the touring Kirov in June 1961 on the tarmac in Paris, which ignited a media firestorm that would spook him the rest of his life.
Chesterton--better known for his Father Brown detective series-mingles theological brainteasing with cloak-and-dagger capers like a cross-country balloon chase and a bombing conspiracy fomented over jam and crumpets.
Looking to the 1982 Tylenol tampering case for ideas, Rohde called together 40 of the company's scientists and asked them to put themselves in the minds of terrorists and to "look for cloak-and-dagger activities.
But the cloak-and-dagger routine is old hat for DaimlerChrysler designer Ralph Gilles, who fashioned the interior of the new Jeep Liberty SUV.
For 18 months, with such cloak-and-dagger tactics, Lee passed along about 1,000 pages of the U.
The Berlin imagery is refracted more obviously through the cinematic portrayal of cloak-and-dagger espionage in the gloomily romantic cities of postwar Central Europe.
The Hill, a weekly published on Capitol Hill, reported in June that the Coalition is "an organization that for months has been split with internal tensions that have been exhibited in cloak-and-dagger power plays both sinister and ridiculous.
Murray's men have had cloak-and-dagger talks with Manchester City chairman David Bernstein.
It is melodramatic, cloak-and-dagger stuff, superficially exciting, like many twentieth-century conspiracy tales, but empty on the evidentiary side.
Through stealth campaigns, the Christian right won countless elected offices, but the cloak-and-dagger routine also became a public-relations liability, particularly Christian Coalition director Ralph Reed's way-out threats about "flying below radar" and operating like a guerrilla warrior.
We don't understand what the cloak-and-dagger stuff is all about.
His computerized data base, to which people may subscribe, contains information on all sorts of spooks, military officials, political operators and other cloak-and-dagger types.