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Fig. during an attack; being attacked. (*Typically: be ~; resign ~; think ~.) There was a scandal in city hall, and the mayor was forced to resign under fire. John is a good lawyer because he can think under fire.
being criticized The court is under fire for being too political.Related vocabulary: under attack
Usage notes: often used with come: Mr. Johnson has come under fire for gossiping about his clients.
Criticized or held responsible, as in The landlord is under fire for not repairing the roof. This expression originally referred to being within range of enemy guns; its figurative use dates from the late 1800s.
1. Exposed or subjected to enemy attack.
2. Exposed or subjected to critical attack or censure: an official who was under fire for mismanagement.