de·​mil·​i·​ta·​rize | \(ˌ)dē-ˈmi-lə-tə-ˌrīz, di-\

Definition of demilitarize 

transitive verb

1a : to do away with the military organization or potential of

b : to prohibit (something, such as a zone or frontier area) from being used for military purposes

2 : to rid of military characteristics or uses

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from demilitarize

demilitarization \ (ˌ)dē-​ˌmi-​lə-​t(ə-​)rə-​ˈzā-​shən , di-​ \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for demilitarize




arm, militarize

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of demilitarize in a Sentence

the two nations agreed to demilitarize themselves reciprocally

Recent Examples on the Web

The Striker has been demilitarized and stripped of all weapons. Kyle Mizokami, Popular Mechanics, "You Can Buy This Missile-Shooting Tank Killer for $36,000," 26 June 2018 Germany was demilitarized in 1945 and only began rebuilding slowly when West Germany joined NATO a decade later. Alexander Smith, NBC News, "NATO ally Germany urged by U.S. to up its military spending," 26 Apr. 2018 In addition, teams of U.S. officials have arrived at the Korean demilitarized zone and in Singapore to prepare for the meeting. Washington Post, "White House: US ‘continues to actively prepare’ for summit," 31 May 2018 Post-Ferguson, Black Lives Matter demanded that politicians demilitarize the police, no longer providing them with surplus army gear and weapons. Lincoln Anthony Blades, Teen Vogue, "Police Shootings Are Gun Violence, Too," 29 Mar. 2018 The group is demanding that lawmakers increase the age for people to purchase weapons, ban military-style weapons and demilitarize police forces. Joe Heim, Washington Post, "Thousands of students walk out of school in nationwide gun violence protest," 14 Mar. 2018 The two Koreas, which are set to hold a summit meeting of their own in late April in the Panmunjom truce village on the inter-Korean demilitarized zone, have held two such prior meetings. Jonathan Cheng, WSJ, "A U.S.-North Korea Meeting Reflects Victory for Moon Jae-in," 9 Mar. 2018 Instituting body cameras, hiring special prosecutors, abandoning grand juries, and demilitarizing departments don't make up for the tolerance of officers who transfer departments because of misconduct and/or poor performance. Lincoln Anthony Blades, Teen Vogue, "Why We Need a Database to Track Police Employment Records," 19 Dec. 2017 With that done, the United States could help Mexico develop a plan for demilitarizing its law-enforcement programs and drug-interdiction activities. Kevin D. Williamson, National Review, "Americas First," 20 Sep. 2017

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

See More

First Known Use of demilitarize

1883, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about demilitarize

Share demilitarize

Statistics for demilitarize

Last Updated

5 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for demilitarize

The first known use of demilitarize was in 1883

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for demilitarize



English Language Learners Definition of demilitarize

: to remove weapons and military forces from (an area)

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on demilitarize

What made you want to look up demilitarize? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


obstinately defiant of authority

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Autumn Words of the Day 2018

  • a-top-down-image-of-road-through-an-autumn-forest
  • Which is a synonym of fugacious?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.


Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!