American English

Definition of conflict noun from the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary



    [countable, uncountable] conflict (between A and B) conflict (over something)
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  1. 1a situation in which people, groups, or countries are involved in a serious disagreement or argument a conflict between two cultures The violence was the result of political and ethnic conflicts. She found herself in conflict with her parents over her future career. John often comes into conflict with his boss. The government has done nothing to resolve the conflict over nurses' pay.
  2. 2a violent situation or period of fighting between two countries armed/military conflict A conflict between the two countries could easily spread across the whole region. Topic CollocationsWar and Peacestarting a war declare/wage war (on somebody/something) go to war (against/with somebody) cause/spark/provoke/foment/quell unrest incite/lead/crush/suppress a revolt/rebellion launch/mount/carry out a surprise/terrorist attack prevent/halt/represent an escalation of the conflict be torn apart by/be on the brink of civil war enter/invade/occupy somebody's territory lead/launch/resist/repel an invasionmilitary operations adopt/develop/implement/pursue a military strategy carry out/execute/perform military operations/maneuvers send/deploy/station/pull back/withdraw troops go on/fly/carry out a reconnaissance/rescue mission train/equip/deploy army/military/combat units lead/launch/conduct an (air/airborne/amphibious) attack/a surprise attack (on somebody); an assault/a raid (on somebody) employ/use guerrilla tactics conduct/wage biological/guerrilla warfare fight/crush/defeat the rebels/the insurgency suffer/inflict a crushing defeat achieve/win a decisive victory halt/stop the American/German advance order/force a retreatfighting join/serve in the Army/Navy/Air Force/Marines/Coast Guard/reserves be/go/remain/serve on active duty do/complete/return from a tour of duty be sent to the front (line) attack/strike/engage/defeat/kill/destroy the enemy witness/see/report/be engaged in heavy fighting call for/be met with armed resistance come under heavy/machine-gun/mortar fire fire a machine gun/mortar shells/rockets (at somebody/something) shoot a rifle/a pistol/bullets/missiles launch/fire a(n) cruise/ballistic/anti-tank missile use biological/chemical/nuclear weapons inflict/suffer/sustain heavy losses/casualties be hit/killed by enemy/friendly/artillery fire become/be held as/be taken as a prisoner of warcivilians in war harm/kill/target/protect innocent/unarmed civilians cause/avoid/limit/minimize civilian casualties/collateral damage impose/enforce/lift a curfew engage in/be a victim of ethnic cleansing be sent to a concentration/an internment camp accept/house/resettle/turn away refugees fleeing from war fear/threaten military/violent reprisals commit/be accused of war crimes/crimes against humanity/genocidemaking peace make/bring/win/achieve/maintain/promote peace call for/negotiate/broker/declare a ceasefire/a temporary truce sign a ceasefire agreement call for/bring/put an end to hostilities demand/negotiate/accept the surrender of somebody/something establish/send (in) a peacekeeping force negotiate/conclude/ratify/sign/accept/reject/break/violate a peace treaty
  3. 3a situation in which there are opposing ideas, opinions, feelings, or wishes; a situation in which it is difficult to choose The story tells of a classic conflict between love and duty. Her diary was a record of her inner conflict. Many of these ideas appear to be in conflict with each other.
  4. Idioms
    conflict of interest(s)
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    a situation in which there are two jobs, aims, roles, etc., and it is not possible for both of them to be treated equally and fairly at the same time There was a conflict of interest between his business dealings and his political activities.
See the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary entry: conflict

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