Definition of rule of engagement in English:

rule of engagement

(also ROE)


  • A directive issued by a military authority specifying the circumstances and limitations under which forces will engage in combat with the enemy.

    • ‘Adopting these tools does not imply adopting accompanying restrictions on combat lethality or local rules of engagement that apply to police forces.’
    • ‘They are also issued guidelines on the rules of engagement.’
    • ‘We are making sure that we have good, solid rules of engagement, good, solid operational procedures.’
    • ‘Enemy forward observers seemed to know the rules of engagement and did not carry weapons, making it difficult to determine hostile intent.’
    • ‘They will also give them training in human rights and instruction on U.S. rules of engagement.’
    • ‘A thinking enemy will always attempt to dictate the rules of engagement, and will never fight the kind of war preferred by its opponent.’
    • ‘Any restrictive set of rules of engagement could cause severe problems in such circumstances.’
    • ‘They are using precision and they have rules of engagement that are appropriate to an urban environment.’
    • ‘In an internal security situation, it is desirable that a government provides clear rules of engagement to the military personnel deployed.’
    • ‘While the new rules of engagement legitimised force, they did not permit the navy to sink a boat or place passengers' lives in jeopardy.’
    • ‘How will policy constraints, rules of engagement, terrain, and the integration of the enemy into his society limit the use of modern technology?’
    • ‘Inherently, a multinational force would have further complicated the formulation of rules of engagement, a task that was difficult enough as it was.’
    • ‘There are no predetermined rules of engagement in play.’
    • ‘From a field officer's point of view, an age of democracy means an age of restrictive rules of engagement.’
    • ‘In traditional infantry missions, the unit briefs specific rules of engagement for combat engagement and disengagement.’
    • ‘Can you set out for us the rules of engagement under which Australian forces will be operating now that they're committed to this operation?’
    • ‘This book brings home the reality that, in this war, we are all in the front line because the enemy does not play according to accepted rules of engagement.’
    • ‘The US is directly interested in the many unresolved debates about military doctrine and rules of engagement.’
    • ‘American rules of engagement always authorize a response in self-defense.’
    • ‘The troops will follow their instructions and will follow what their leadership has given them, in terms of rules of engagement.’