shooting war

noun
open conflict between hostile nations involving direct military engagements.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Example sentences
But these days, if it turned into a shooting war, we'd lose.
The two sides in the shooting war in the national park signed a ceasefire
  months ago.
So he has started spending quality time drinking chai with local leaders
  instead of fighting a shooting war.
Even if there is a lull in the shooting war, there are many bitter issues to be
  settled.
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