an act of war


Also found in: Acronyms.

an act of war

1. A violent action that could initiate large-scale fighting. If we invade that country, it will be an act of war.
2. By extension, any unwelcome action that elicits an angry response. You played my video games when I wasn't home? Oh, that's an act of war, little brother!
See also: act, of, war

an act of war

 
1. Lit. an international act of warlike violence for which war is considered a suitable response. To bomb a ship is an act of war.
2. Fig. any hostile act between two people. "You just broke my stereo!" yelled John. "That's an act of war!"
See also: act, of, war
References in periodicals archive ?
New Delhi [India], Feb27 (ANI): Lauding the Indian Air Force (IAF) for Tuesday's air strikes targeting terror launch pads in Pakistan, defence and strategic analyst, JK Verma said that the air strike is not an act of war, "but our right to do so".
It was America that invaded us - which was an act of war. Again, many Filipinos fought back, risked death rather than modern day slavery.
and its followers as a grave infringement upon the sovereignty of our Republic, as an act of war violating peace and stability in the Korean Peninsula and the region and categorically reject the resolution," North Koreas foreign ministry said in a statement.
4, which Saudi Arabis decried as an act of war by Tehran.
Qattan further expressed his frustration with Iran and its actions, elaborating; "Is it not an act of war to launch such missiles [ballistic] from Yemen on Riyadh?" "Saudi Arabia does not call for wars.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told the UK Foreign Secretary yesterday this "may be considered an act of war".
ISLAMABAD -- Adviser for Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz has said unilateral revocation of Indus Water Treaty will be an act of war.
Summary: An act of war, or a crime against humanity?
Saying that the attacks were an act of war could motivate public opinion for a more rigorous response than France has so far pursued against IS.
Hollande, who declared three days of national mourning and raised the nation's security to its highest level, called the carnage "an act of war that was prepared, organized, planned from abroad with internal help."
There was no Iraqi military resistance and the allies maintained no-fly zones, in itself, an act of war. Bush and Blair were extending war against a nation that could no longer defend itself (thanks to effective weapons inspections).
Kim says the film, which is about a CIA plot to assassinate him, is "an act of war" by the U.S.
2001: The President of the US describes the destruction caused in New York, above, and Washington as an act of war.
A growing number of insurance companies are promising to waive their right to dismiss claims on the private insurance policies of passengers and crew of Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 if the aircraft's crash is deemed to be due to an act of war. With a potential cost of tens of millions of dollars, the gesture may be an expensive move for an industry already suffering a bad year for aviation claims.
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