An army of hackers put America's power grid in its sights - meaning of in its sights

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Source: http://gizmodo.com/you-just-missed-a-massive-destructive-fake-cyberatta-1465317346

What would happen if an army of hackers put America's power grid in its sights and pulled the trigger? How fast would the country descend into darkness? Would there be anarchy in the streets? Would people die? According to a war game carried out across the country this week, the answer is not necessarily good news.

I can't figure out the meaning of in its sights in this sentence.

Michael Rybkin

Posted 2014-07-01T07:11:43.107

Reputation: 37 124

http://monosnap.com/image/tCIoCgXoIhe8om4eKFhKDhPU0HnZVp.png – Sergio Tulentsev – 2014-07-01T15:37:04.510

Answers

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Sights are the parts of a weapon - for instance, a gun - that lets you aim it more accurately.

This is a metaphor: to put something in your sights is to aim at it, and so you could congruently phrase it instead:

What would happen if an army of hackers aimed at America's power grid...

jimsug

Posted 2014-07-01T07:11:43.107

Reputation: 4 208

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She's got you in her sights:

As jimsug's answer says, the sights are a part of a weapon which help you to aim it.

Max

Posted 2014-07-01T07:11:43.107

Reputation: 266

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It refers to an intense focus, and as mentioned above, through the scope of a weapon. It implies that the entire problem is being viewed and processed in great detail. There is an assumption that a solution or more information will be provided and the person who is focusing is in a position of power to control the situation.

There is a sense of urgency in the saying.

NuclearPeon

Posted 2014-07-01T07:11:43.107

Reputation: 121

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in its sight, as for that sentence, means as their target, as far as i know. It fits quite nicely too, "What would happen if an army of hackers put America's power grid as their target and pulled the trigger"

user3765896

Posted 2014-07-01T07:11:43.107

Reputation: 11