Domino Theory Definition

The theory that a certain result (domino effect) will follow a certain cause like a row of upright dominoes falling if the first is pushed; specif., the theory that if a nation becomes a Communist state, the nations nearby will also.
Webster's New World
A theory that one event will set off a train of similar events, especially:
American Heritage

(politics, historical) The theory that, if South Vietnam fell to Communism, it would be followed by Cambodia, Laos, and additional South Asian countries.


Origin of Domino Theory

  • An allusion to a row of dominoes in which the fall of one leads to a cascade of falling pieces.

    From Wiktionary

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