sleeper cell

noun

Definition of sleeper cell

: a terrorist cell whose members work under cover in an area until sent into action

Examples of sleeper cell in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Still, extremist sleeper cells have continued to launch attacks in Iraq and Syria and are believed to be responsible for targeted killings against local officials and members of the Syrian Democratic Forces. Calvin Woodward, Fortune, "Fact Checking Trump’s Recent Claims on Iran, Jobs, and the Environment," 13 Jan. 2020 Still, extremist sleeper cells have continued to launch attacks in Iraq and Syria and are believed to be responsible for targeted killings against local officials and members of the Syrian Democratic Forces. Calvin Woodward, Fortune, "Fact Checking Trump’s Recent Claims on Iran, Jobs, and the Environment," 13 Jan. 2020 Still, extremist sleeper cells have continued to launch attacks in Iraq and Syria and are believed to be responsible for targeted killings against local officials and members of the Syrian Democratic Forces. Calvin Woodward, Fortune, "Fact Checking Trump’s Recent Claims on Iran, Jobs, and the Environment," 13 Jan. 2020 Thousands of fighters are scattered among the group’s sleeper cells, and have claimed attacks in both Iraq and neighboring Syria in recent months. Washington Post, "IS gloats at Iran general’s death, says it pleased Muslims," 10 Jan. 2020 Still, extremist sleeper cells have continued to launch attacks in Iraq and Syria and are believed to be responsible for targeted killings against local officials and members of the Syrian Democratic Forces. Hope Yen, Anchorage Daily News, "Fact-checking Trump’s address on Iran," 8 Jan. 2020 In just three days over the past week, S.D.F. commandos captured a top ISIS financier who is linked to a car bombing (and was in possession of explosives); an explosives expert; and a commander of an ISIS sleeper cell. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, "Defying the World, Turkey Launches a War Against a U.S. Ally in Syria," 9 Oct. 2019 The militants have returned to the group’s guerrilla roots by embedding constellations of sleeper cells in both Iraq and Syria to routinely carry out ambushes, bombings and assassinations. John Walcott, Time, "ISIS Fighters Are Gaining Strength After Trump's Syria Pullout, U.S. Spies Say," 19 Nov. 2019 Overnight, as Kurdish fighters braced themselves for a Turkish invasion, the SDF reported that ISIS sleeper cells had launched three attacks on its security bases in the city of Raqqa. Saphora Smith, NBC News, "Turkish-Syrian border like 'volcano,' can 'explode' at any moment, says militia commander," 9 Oct. 2019

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

1968, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for sleeper cell

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The first known use of sleeper cell was in 1968

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Statistics for sleeper cell

Last Updated

27 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Sleeper cell.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/sleeper%20cell. Accessed 28 Mar. 2020.

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