‘… his tight-knight circle of recruiters and terror-plot instigators did not respond to questions yesterday’.
Excerpt from an article in The Australian concerning the circumstances of a (named) Islamic State Recruiter.
As I see it, there are three possible explanations/interpretations of this descriptive phrase.
- A tight-knight circle could be:
a gathering of people who have been honoured by the state and who get together to overindulge on alcohol.
- a gathering of people who have been honoured by the state and who stand or sit close together in a circle. The presence of the hyphen suggests that they are also overindulging in alcohol.
Neither of these seem likely. That leaves
- a journalist’s attempt at describing the close links within a group of people. Tight-knit would have been better.
Source: Digital version of The Australian newspaper, February 1, 2016.