from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A very large conventional bomb delivered by aircraft and designed to explode a short distance above the ground, with the blast damage concentrated at ground level in a radius extending for hundreds of feet.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun baseball, slang, dated, 1800s A well-struck ground ball.
  • noun cricket A ball that bounces more than once before reaching the batsman.
  • noun slang The BLU-82 bomb, for its ability to flatten a forest into a helicopter landing zone.

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

  • noun a bomb with only 10 to 20 per cent explosive and the remainder consisting of casings designed to break into many small high-velocity fragments; most effective against troops and vehicles
  • noun a batted or served ball that skims along close to the ground


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  • "Over three days and three nights we watched in disbelief as a small group of very young men, armed with guns and gadgets, exposed the powerlessness of the police, the elite National Security Guard, and the marine commandos of this supposedly mighty, nuclear-powered nation. While they did this, they indiscriminately massacred unarmed people, in railway stations, hospitals, and luxury hotels, unmindful of their class, caste, religion, or nationality.

    (Part of the helplessness of the security forces had to do with having to worry about hostages. In other situations, in Kashmir for example, their tactics are not so sensitive. Whole buildings are blown up. Human shields are used. The U.S. and Israeli armies don't hesitate to send cruise missiles into buildings and drop daisy cutters on wedding parties in Palestine, Iraq, and Afghanistan.)

    But this was different. And it was on TV."

    - Arundhati Roy, '9 Is Not 11 (And November Isn't September)',, 12 December 2008.

    December 14, 2008