from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A preemptive attack against an enemy, especially one using nuclear weapons against an enemy armed with nuclear weapons.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. the initial use of nuclear weapons to attack a country that also has nuclear weapons; considered feasible only when the attacker can destroy the other country's ability to retaliate


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • The first strike against a northern airfield was at Kep in April 1967, prompting the NVAF to move many of its one hundred or so fighters to sanctuary in China.

    On Yankee Station

  • Up and over he went for his bomb run and the timing was great as the first strike flight was approaching their own roll-in.

    Thud Ridge

  • Nor is the Pershing II, which cannot even reach most Soviet strategic weapons, a potential first strike weapon.

    An American Life

  • The air force conducts the first strike against the Paul Doumer bridge.

    On Yankee Station


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