Definition of pull back (or pull someone/something back) in US English:

pull back (or pull someone/something back)

phrasal verb

  • 1Retreat or cause troops to retreat from an area.

    ‘the pact called on the rival forces to pull back and allow a neutral force to take control’
    • ‘Although all have agreed to a ceasefire and to pulling their forces back from the frontline, latest reports suggest that apart from Uganda none have withdrawn troops altogether.’
    • ‘At that point, the division headquarters and support troops were pulled back to refit.’
    • ‘‘As we start to trust each other a little more, most troops will be pulled back and returned to their barracks,’ he said.’
    • ‘If British troops were pulled back now what then?’
    • ‘South Korean and Bulgarian troops were pulled back to their bases, while New Zealand is withdrawing its engineers.’
    withdraw, retreat, draw back, fall back, retire, disengage, pull out, back off, give ground, give way
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    1. 1.1pull back Withdraw from an undertaking.
      ‘the party pulled back from its only positive policy’
      • ‘Obviously, she pulled back on that a little bit.’
      • ‘Some are pressuring their banks to pull back, undercutting subsidiaries in East Europe.’
      • ‘Particularly after the health care debacle early on, she really pulled back.’
      • ‘Last week, it pulled back from this position, confirming that it had reached an agreement with the firm's directors.’
      • ‘With consumers and investors both pulling back, there is one reliable tool of economic stimulus - government spending.’
      • ‘The award comes at a time when Chance has been forced to pull back from his community efforts.’
      • ‘Consumers are pulling back on their spending amid the recession.’
      • ‘We will not pull back from it.’
      • ‘And, therefore, we're going to pull back on that and we'll look at it in hearings and in committee.’
      withdraw, resign, leave, retire, step down, get out, quit, back out, bow out
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