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The story of an imaginary word that managed to sneak past our editors and enter the dictionary. How we chose 'feminism'. How to use a word that literally drives some people nuts. The awkward case of 'his or her'. Test your visual vocabulary with our question challenge! Synonyms Example Sentences Learn More about traitor.


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  • Traitor | Definition of Traitor by Merriam-Webster.
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Synonyms for traitor Synonyms apostate , backstabber , betrayer , double-crosser , double-dealer , Judas , quisling , recreant , serpent , snake , turncoat Visit the Thesaurus for More. Examples of traitor in a Sentence She has been called a traitor to the liberal party's cause. He was a traitor who betrayed his country by selling military secrets to the enemy. Recent Examples on the Web In what are probably Sen. Grant, Ted Kennedy and Nixon got a break at the end.

Why are feminists there still labeled traitors? First Known Use of traitor 13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1. Learn More about traitor. Some say he's a traitor to the working class.

Word origin of 'traitor'. Example sentences containing 'traitor' These examples have been automatically selected and may contain sensitive content. I was called a traitor for being positive about immigration.

Definition of 'traitor'

Times, Sunday Times He is a traitor and a spy. The Sun Chechen rebels have branded him a traitor. Times, Sunday Times One of a traitor who betrays her own kin. Times, Sunday Times How dare anyone call me a traitor? Times, Sunday Times Nor is there reason to call people traitors, as some important people are doing. Butt, Gerald A Rock and a Hard Place In paranoid Baghdad today anyone working for a foreigner risks a horrible death as a spy and traitor. In the United States, Benedict Arnold 's name is considered synonymous with treason due to his collaboration with the British during the American Revolutionary War.

However, this occurred before the Constitution was written. Arnold became a general in the British Army, which protected him. Since the Constitution came into effect, there have been fewer than 40 federal prosecutions for treason and even fewer convictions. Several men were convicted of treason in connection with the Whiskey Rebellion but were pardoned by President George Washington. The most famous treason trial, that of Aaron Burr in , resulted in acquittal. The only physical evidence presented to the grand jury was Wilkinson's so-called letter from Burr, which proposed the idea of stealing land in the Louisiana Purchase.

Since no witnesses testified, Burr was acquitted in spite of the full force of Jefferson's political influence thrown against him. Immediately afterward, Burr was tried on a misdemeanor charge and was again acquitted. During the American Civil War , treason trials were held in Indianapolis against Copperheads for conspiring with the Confederacy against the United States.

Video: pronunciation of 'traitor'

Jefferson Davis , the Confederate president, was indicted and held in prison for two years. The indictment was dropped in when the political scene had changed and it was possible he would be acquitted by a jury in Virginia. Grant assured all Confederate soldiers and officers a blanket amnesty, provided they returned to their homes and refrained from any further acts of hostility, and subsequently other Union generals issued similar terms of amnesty when accepting Confederate surrenders. In Iva Toguri D'Aquino was convicted of treason for wartime radio broadcasts under the name of "Tokyo Rose" and sentenced to ten years, of which she served six.

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As a result of prosecution witnesses having lied under oath, she was pardoned in In Tomoya Kawakita , a Japanese-American dual citizen was convicted of treason and sentenced to death for having worked as an interpreter at a Japanese POW camp and having mistreated American prisoners. He was recognized by a former prisoner at a department store in after having returned to the United States. He was released and deported in The Cold War saw frequent talk linking treason with support for Communist -led causes.

The most memorable of these came from Senator Joseph McCarthy , who used rhetoric about the Democrats as guilty of "twenty years of treason". As chosen chair of the Senate Permanent Investigations Subcommittee , McCarthy also investigated various government agencies for Soviet spy rings see the Venona project ; however, he acted as a political fact-finder rather than a criminal prosecutor.

The Cold War period saw no prosecutions for explicit treason, but there were convictions and even executions for conspiracy to commit espionage on behalf of the Soviet Union , such as in the Julius and Ethel Rosenberg case. On October 11, , the United States government charged Adam Yahiye Gadahn for videos in which he appeared as a spokesman for al-Qaeda and threatened attacks on American soil. Most states have treason provisions in their constitutions or statutes similar to those in the U. The Extradition Clause specifically defines treason as an extraditable offense.

Thomas Jefferson in said that any Virginia official who cooperated with the federal Bank of the United States proposed by Alexander Hamilton was guilty of "treason" against the state of Virginia and should be executed. The Bank opened and no one was prosecuted.

Several persons have been prosecuted for treason on the state level. Thomas Dorr was convicted for treason against the state of Rhode Island for his part in the Dorr Rebellion , but was eventually granted amnesty. John Brown was convicted of treason against the Commonwealth of Virginia for his part in the raid on Harpers Ferry , and was hanged.

The Mormon prophet , Joseph Smith , was charged with treason against Missouri along with five others, at first in front of a state military court , but Smith was allowed to escape [43] to Illinois after his case was transferred to a civilian court for trial on charges of treason and other crimes. Early in Islamic history , the only form of treason was seen as the attempt to overthrow a just government or waging war against the State. According to Islamic tradition, the prescribed punishment ranged from imprisonment to the severing of limbs and the death penalty depending on the severity of the crime.

However, even in cases of treason the repentance of a person would have to be taken into account. Currently, the consensus among major Islamic schools is that apostasy leaving Islam is considered treason and that the penalty is death; this is supported not in the Quran but in hadith. In the 19th and early 20th century, the Iranian Cleric Sheikh Fazlollah Noori opposed the Iranian Constitutional Revolution by inciting insurrection against them through issuing fatwas and publishing pamphlets arguing that democracy would bring vice to the country. The new government executed him for treason in In Malaysia , it is treason to commit offences against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong 's person, or to wage or attempt to wage war or abet the waging of war against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong , a Ruler or Yang di-Pertua Negeri.

All these offences are punishable by hanging, which derives from the English treason acts as a former British colony, Malaysia's legal system is based on English common law. In Bahrain , plotting to topple the regime, collaborating with a foreign hostile country and threatening the life of the Emir are defined as treason and punishable by death.

The State Security Law of was used to crush dissent that could be seen as treasonous, which was criticised for permitting severe human rights violations in accordance with Article One:. If there is serious evidence that a person has perpetrated acts, delivered statements, exercised activities, or has been involved in contacts inside or outside the country, which are of a nature considered to be in violation of the internal or external security of the country, the religious and national interests of the State, its social or economic system; or considered to be an act of sedition that affects or can possibly affect the existing relations between the people and Government, between the various institutions of the State, between the classes of the people, or between those who work in corporations propagating subversive propaganda or disseminating atheistic principles; the Minister of Interior may order the arrest of that person, committing him to one of Bahrain's prisons, searching him, his residence and the place of his work, and may take any measure which he deems necessary for gathering evidence and completing investigations.

The period of detention may not exceed three years. Searches may only be made and the measures provided for in the first paragraph may only be taken upon judicial writ. In the areas controlled by the Palestinian National Authority , it is treason to give assistance to Israeli troops without the authorization of the Palestinian Authority or to sell land to Jews irrespective of nationality and also non-Jewish Israeli citizens under the Palestinian Land Laws , as part of the PA's general policy of discouraging the expansion of Israeli settlements.

Both crimes are capital offences subject to the death penalty , although the former provision has not often been enforced since the beginning of effective security cooperation between the Israel Defense Forces , Israel Police , and Palestinian National Security Forces since the mids decade under the leadership of Prime Minister Salam Fayyad. Likewise, in the Gaza Strip under the Hamas -led government, any sort of cooperation or assistance to Israeli forces during military actions is also punishable by death. Different cultures have evolved a variety of terms for "traitor" or collaborator, often based on historical incidences of treason to that culture or of people whose name has become a byword for treason.

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For other uses, see Treason disambiguation or Traitor disambiguation. Treason in the Republic of Ireland. High treason in the United Kingdom. Petty treason and Treason felony. Treason laws in the United States. Capital punishment in the Gaza Strip. List of people convicted of treason. Religion, the Englightenment, and the Formation of American Literature. University of Virginia Press. Retrieved 17 November Australasian Legal Information Institute. New South Wales Consolidated Acts.

Retrieved 27 September Hong Kong Crimes Ordinance. The Comparative Law Society. Department of the Taoiseach. Penal Code of Japan: A Dictionary of Contemporary World History. Treason and other crimes against the Queen and the State".


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Review of Oaths and Affirmations. New Zealand Ministry of Justice. The New York Times. The Idea of a Party System: University of California Press. Notwithstanding this, some Northern leaders still tried to indict various Confederate leaders for treason, and Grant reminded President Johnson of the terms of surrender. White House Office of the Press Secretary.