[uncountable] retaliation (against somebody/something) (for something) action that a person takes against somebody who has harmed them in some way synonym reprisal retaliation against UN workers The shooting may have been in retaliation for the arrest of the terrorist suspects.Extra examples He never said a single word in retaliation. Retaliation against government troops is feared. She may face retaliation for speaking out. They decided not to use chemical weapons as retaliation in kind. They killed two men in retaliation for a bomb attack the previous day. a casual remark that brought swift retaliation from her boyfriend contingency plans to deter possible nuclear retaliation retaliation for the bombing of civilians the possibility of retaliation by other governments The Congress has threatened retaliation if they do not comply. They fear retaliation against British troops and aid workers.