cross fire


: firing (as in combat) from two or more points so that the lines of fire cross
: a situation wherein the forces of opposing factions meet, cross, or clash
caught in a political cross fire
: rapid or heated exchange of words

Examples of cross fire in a Sentence

viewers tune in to witness the weekly cross fire between the liberal and conservative commentators
Recent Examples on the Web Their car escaped only because Gal pushed the driver’s head down to avoid being hit by the intense cross fire. David Harsanyi, National Review, 25 Jan. 2024 The consequence is that others are caught in the great-power cross fire or will seek to start fires of their own. Paul Poast, The Atlantic, 17 Nov. 2023 But most DDoS attacks were less principled: the constant AK-47 cross fire of the cybercriminal internet’s internecine wars and vandalism. Andy Greenberg, WIRED, 14 Nov. 2023 Thousands of wealthy Arabs left in anticipation of war, thousands more responded to Arab leaders’ call to get out of the way of the advancing armies, a handful were expelled, but most simply fled to avoid being caught in the cross fire of battle. Benjamin Weinthal, Fox News, 15 May 2023 For two months they were trapped in their house, without electricity, windows shattered, caught in the cross fire of constant shelling. George Packer, The Atlantic, 6 Sep. 2022 That work is possible thanks to an exception in California’s penal code that specifically carves out privileges for journalists to cross fire lines. Grant Stringer, The Christian Science Monitor, 26 Aug. 2022 Caught in the cross fire, the FDA and CDC issued a series of seemingly contradictory communications about who should be signing up for extra shots and when. Katherine J. Wu, The Atlantic, 28 June 2022 The market has indiscriminately penalized tech stocks across the board and cybersecurity stocks are simply caught in the cross fire. Beth Kindig, Forbes, 10 June 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cross fire.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1799, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of cross fire was in 1799

Dictionary Entries Near cross fire

Cite this Entry

“Cross fire.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 21 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

cross fire

: gunfire from two or more places so that the lines of fire cross
: a rapid or angry exchange (as of words)
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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