Dictionary.com

preventive war

Save This Word!

noun Military.
an attack against a presumed enemy to prevent a possible attack by that enemy at a later time: because preventive wars are prompted more by speculation than by clearly imminent danger, they generally are considered unacceptable in international law.
QUIZ
WILL YOU SAIL OR STUMBLE ON THESE GRAMMAR QUESTIONS?
Smoothly step over to these common grammar mistakes that trip many people up. Good luck!
Question 1 of 7
Fill in the blank: I can’t figure out _____ gave me this gift.

Origin of preventive war

First recorded in 1630–40
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2022

How to use preventive war in a sentence

FEEDBACK