- a military practice of devastating the property and agriculture of an area before abandoning it to an advancing enemy.
Origin of scorched-earth policy
1935–40; apparently translation of Chinese jiāotǔ zhèngcè
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
scorched earth policy
- the policy in warfare of removing or destroying everything that might be useful to an invading enemy, esp by fire
- commerce a manoeuvre by a company expecting an unwelcome takeover bid in which apparent profitability is greatly reduced by a reversible operation, such as borrowing at an exorbitant interest rate
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012