ex·pan·sion·ism | \ik-ˈspan(t)-shə-ˌni-zəm \

Definition of expansionism 

: a policy or practice of expansion and especially of territorial expansion by a nation

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Other Words from expansionism

expansionist \ik-ˈspan(t)-sh(ə-)nist \ noun
expansionist or less commonly expansionistic \ik-ˌspan(t)-shə-ˈni-stik \ adjective

Examples of expansionism in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Still, Russian expansionism is not all about Mr. Putin and his personal ambitions. Yaroslav Trofimov, WSJ, "Russia’s Turn to Its Asian Past," 6 July 2018 Fascinatingly, Kennan was uncomfortable with the degree to which, during the hard slog of getting congressional approval for the Marshall Plan, the Truman administration stressed the threat of Soviet Communist expansionism. Ned Temko, The Christian Science Monitor, "US-Europe ties and the audacity of July 1948," 9 July 2018 It was signed in 1949 in an effort to contain Soviet expansionism after World War II. Alex Ward, Vox, "NATO Summit 2018: Trump meets with world leaders in Brussels," 28 June 2018 But the Israelis, the Gulf states, and now Trump believed the opposite—that Iran was the principal enemy in the region and that the nuclear pact showed weakness, and only fuelled Iranian expansionism. Adam Entous, The New Yorker, "Donald Trump’s New World Order," 11 June 2018 That has led Ankara to recalibrate its focus toward halting Kurdish expansionism. Washington Post, "AP Explains: What’s next after Turkey seizes Syria’s Afrin," 19 Mar. 2018 Pompeo will be forced to quickly address a wide array of other international challenges, including long conflicts in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, Chinese expansionism in Asia and Russian assertiveness. Patricia Zengerle, Anchorage Daily News, "Pompeo becomes U.S. secretary of state as Iran, North Korea issues await," 26 Apr. 2018 To contain the regional danger posed by aggressive Iranian expansionism, as well as to protect its national interests, the U.S. should adopt a four-pronged approach to Iraq. Zalmay Khalilzad, WSJ, "Limit Iran’s Influence in Iraq," 2 Apr. 2018 Whatever its tactical flirtations, Turkey remains opposed to Iranian expansionism and wary of Russia for reasons of history and geography. chicagotribune.com, "US alliance with Turkey is worth preserving," 19 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'expansionism.' 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 expansionism

1899, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of expansionism was in 1899

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English Language Learners Definition of expansionism

: the belief that a country should grow larger : a policy of increasing a country's size by expanding its territory

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a state of commotion or excitement

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