Meaning of Contra in English:


Pronunciation /ˈkɒntrə/

See synonyms for Contra on


  • A member of a guerrilla force in Nicaragua which opposed the left-wing Sandinista government 1979–90, and was supported by the US for much of that time.

    ‘But the Sandinistas, not the contras, now threatened armed resistance to the new democratic government.’
    • ‘In Nicaragua, meanwhile, many of those recently arrested for gun-running have turned out to be either former contras or members of the Sandinista army.’
    • ‘When the Sandinista government of Nicaragua tried to take the United States to court for supporting the contras in the 1980s, for example, the U.S. government simply ignored the action.’
    • ‘The contras were conducting a guerrilla war against the Sandinista government of Nicaragua, a Marxist-infiltrated regime.’
    • ‘At the time, the US was covertly backing the contras, the counter-revolutionaries who opposed the Sandinistas.’
    • ‘Had Honduras been found to be engaging in systematic abuses, it could have lost its US aid - thwarting the Reagan Administration's use of Honduras to support the contras.’
    • ‘And the movie accepts his assertion that he knew nothing of the illegal diversion of funds to the contras fighting in Nicaragua.’
    • ‘During the 1980s the contras, strongly backed by the United States, raised 18,000 troops to fight the revolution.’
    • ‘Some military bases were covers for Nicaraguan contras.’
    • ‘The most dramatic iteration came on the floor of the Senate in 1986, when he made it the centerpiece of a carefully prepared 20-minute oration against aid to the Nicaraguan contras.’
    • ‘His office wrote bogus editorial pieces under the names of Nicaraguan contras and got them published in the mainstream media.’
    opposed to, in opposition to, hostile to, averse to, antagonistic towards, inimical to, unsympathetic to, resistant to, at odds with, in disagreement with, contra


Abbreviation of Spanish contrarevolucionario ‘counter-revolutionary’.