What is the meaning of "divisive" in this sentence:

This makes it part of the tension and a participating force in divisive, military interventions in war zones.

Can it mean that both that:

a) The interventions are controversial?

b) The interventions aim to disrupt the political establishment in the country?

  • What this question about (Can it mean that both that)? Can you revise or amplify that interrogative sentence?
    – Max
    Apr 21, 2017 at 10:27

2 Answers 2


Divisive means "intended to divide" - if that division could cause disruption, then it would imply (but not mean) disruption.

It would most likely mean "the interventions are controversial" as "divisive" sort of implies something is making a whole divide into two separate sides. Like a bunch of people forming alliances either for or against something after an event occurs. But the second meaning is possible.


I take it to mean that the military interventions unambiguously complete their aims, i.e. that there is no doubt in the outcome of the military intervention: success is completely `divided' from failure.

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