coun·​ter·​in·​sur·​gen·​cy | \ ˌkau̇n-tər-in-ˈsər-jən(t)-sē How to pronounce counterinsurgency (audio) \

Definition of counterinsurgency

: organized military activity designed to combat insurgency

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Other Words from counterinsurgency

counterinsurgent \ ˌkau̇n-​tər-​in-​ˈsər-​jənt How to pronounce counterinsurgent (audio) \ noun

Examples of counterinsurgency in a Sentence

The military has launched a counterinsurgency.

Recent Examples on the Web

But in counterinsurgency—that already-paradoxical quest to win hearts and minds at the ends of rifle muzzles—such draconian tactics moot the strategy. Adrian Bonenberger, The New Republic, "The Sum of All Beards," 4 June 2019 Initially in the early 1990s when the anti-India rebellion peaked, Kashmir police were hesitant to be drawn into the counterinsurgency following attacks on them and their family members. Aijaz Hussain, Fox News, "Anti-India rebels abduct and kill 3 policemen in Kashmir," 21 Sep. 2018 Moreover, senior military officials worry that after 17 years in Afghanistan and Iraq, American troops have become far more used to counterinsurgency fighting than a land war against a state, as an attack on North Korea would likely bring. Helene Cooper And Eric Schmitt, New York Times, "U.S. Banks on Diplomacy With North Korea, but Moves Ahead on Military Plans," 28 Feb. 2018 The two had helped cover the crisis in Rakhine state, where an aggressive counterinsurgency operation drove about 700,000 Rohingya Muslims to neighboring Bangladesh. Fox News, "Myanmar policeman testifies arrested reporters were set up," 20 Apr. 2018 Both emphasize a shift from counterterrorism and counterinsurgency efforts toward a focus on large power competition, such as from China and Russia, forming the basis for future budget and policy priorities. Courtney Mcbride, WSJ, "Trump Outlines Broader Missile-Defense Strategy," 17 Jan. 2019 Myanmar's military responded with counterinsurgency sweeps and a scorched-earth campaign against Rohingya villages. Fox News, "Human rights group opposes moving Rohingya to island camp," 6 Aug. 2018 The study hails the switch to a counterinsurgency strategy overseen by Gen. David Petraeus, here in Baghdad in 2007, and Gen. Odierno. Michael R. Gordon, WSJ, "The Army Stymied Its Own Study of the Iraq War," 22 Oct. 2018 Some 700,000 Rohingya have fled from Myanmar’s western state of Rakhine over the past year in response to a brutal counterinsurgency campaign by the military, which has been accused of massive human rights violations. Victoria Milko, The Seattle Times, "Facebook bans Myanmar military chief, others to stop hate," 28 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'counterinsurgency.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of counterinsurgency

1962, in the meaning defined above

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Statistics for counterinsurgency

Last Updated

12 Jun 2019

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Time Traveler for counterinsurgency

The first known use of counterinsurgency was in 1962

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English Language Learners Definition of counterinsurgency

formal : action by a group, army, etc., against people who are fighting to take control of a government

More from Merriam-Webster on counterinsurgency

Nglish: Translation of counterinsurgency for Spanish Speakers

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