in the crosshairs

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Prepositional phrase[edit]

in the crosshairs

  1. (literally) targeted at the point of intersection of the two perpendicular lines in a gunsight or scope
  2. (idiomatic) subject to close scrutiny
  3. (idiomatic) singled out for blame, harassment, or other unwanted attention
    • 1989 Nov. 3, "Brilliant acting, conception drive ‘Largo Desolato’," The Advocate (Louisiana, USA) (retrieved 27 Oct. 2011):
      Nettles lives in the crosshairs, with the secret police, his sympathizers, and his now and would-be lovers making impossible demands on him.
    • 1998 Dec. 2, Frank Rich, "Opinion: What's Good for General Motors . . .," New York Times (retrieved 27 Oct. 2011):
      The German industrial giants that exploited slave labor during the war, from Volkswagen to Krupp, are in the crosshairs of class-action suits from Holocaust survivors.
    • 2009 April 22, Alex Altman, "2 Minute Bio: California Rep. Jane Harman," Time:
      U.S. Representative Jane Harman, a California Democrat, has found herself in the crosshairs of a potential scandal.