Booby trapped road and houses

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Senior Member
"Last month, the northern Iraqi city of Sinjar, which had been under the brutal rule of the Islamic State for more than 15 months, fell to Kurdish forces in less than 48 hours, after a sustained assault by American A-10 attack jets. As Kurdish forces advanced, the Islamic State fighters, having booby-trapped roads and houses, chose to run rather than fight for the city, burning hundreds of tires so the smoke would obscure their departure."

New York Times

What does "booby-trapped roads and houses" mean? Is this a rather colloquial term?

  • heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    From the WR Dictionary: ˈboo•by ˌtrap,n.[countable] Military, a hidden bomb set off when a person who does not know it is there steps on it, touches a wire, or the like.

    So "booby-trapped roads and houses" is literal, and means that they left these bombs in houses and on roads before running.

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