A hardline Stalinist. A tankie is a member of a communist group or a "fellow traveller" (sympathiser) who believes fully in the political system of the Soviet Union and defends/defended the actions of the Soviet Union and other accredited states (China, Serbia, etc.) to the hilt, even in cases where other communists criticise their policies or actions. For instance, such a person favours overseas interventions by Soviet-style states, defends these regimes when they engage in human rights violations, and wishes to establish a similar system in other countries such as Britain and America.

The term is used to distinguish the rare individuals with these kinds of beliefs from communists more broadly (including Communist Party members), whose adherence to Soviet doctrine and attachment to existing "socialist" states is somewhat weaker.

It is always more-or-less abusive in the sense that those termed tankies do not use the term themselves, but it doesn't have any particular bite (unlike, say, Trot).

The term derives from the fact that the divisions within the communist movement first arose when the Soviet Union sent tanks into communist Hungary in 1956, to crush an attempt to establish an alternative version of communism which was not embraced by the Russians. Most communists outside the eastern bloc opposed this action and criticised the Soviet Union. The "tankies" were those who said "send the tanks in".

The epithet has stuck because tankies also supported "sending the tanks in" in cases such as Czechoslovakia 1968, Afghanistan 1979, Bosnia and Kosovo/a (in the case of the Serbian state), and so on (whereas the rest of the communist movement has gravitated towards anti-militarism).
I wouldn't be surprised if the tankies even defend Saddam Hussein.

Some of the people round George W Bush used to be left-wing, but they haven't really changed their views much; they were mostly tankies.
by Andy April 21, 2004
Get the tankie mug.
An apologist for dictatorial regimes with atrocious records on human rights, so long as those countries are not the US. A person who thinks that because the US is flawed, and has done bad things, that that means that countries that are or have traditionally been our adversaries (generally communist countries) are actually perfectly fine places to live, and everything bad that you hear about them is a Western lie. Someone who goes beyond just being a communist or socialist, into defending some truly awful regimes, a tankie throws out the baby with the bathwater.
John thinks Stalin was awesome, says China isn't oppressing the Uyghurs, and believes that everything bad you hear about North Korea is a lie that the American media wants you to believe. John is a tankie.
by q359 March 2, 2023
Get the tankie mug.
Tankies are so deluded that they cannot see irony at all in their own speech
by ryvnwue June 11, 2022
Get the tankie mug.
Anyone who doesn’t think communist countries are required to roll over and die when confronting a capitalist belligerent.
Noah Smith heaped abuse on tankies for saying DC-based OAS was lying about electoral fraud in Bolivia.
by jchristian January 13, 2022
Get the tankie mug.
Most powerful and knowledgeable political opponent you could encounter from an obscure edge of the internet landscape. They boast strong support for any entity that identify itself with the commons and have combative attitude against any repression of liberty, freedom and dignity imposed on the downtrodden.

They're devout defenders of Joseph Stalin.
Anna: Stalin was a ruthless murderer! He caused famine in UkrainE!!

Alex: I heard he ate all the grains with a comically large spoon, and personally massacred 2 billions. What a tragedy!
Anna: What?! You're joking about this? If it was your grandma, you wouldn't be laughing!
Alex: If it was my grandma, then she's probably deserved it. Man clearly didn't kill enough people.
Anna: I wouldn't agree to marry you if I knew you were such a tankie.
Alex: Neither would I if I knew you were such an ignorant enemy of the people.
by Veteran Keyboard Warrior December 14, 2022
Get the tankie mug.
A member of the Royal Tank Regiment of the British Army. The RTR are part of the Royal Armoured Corps- the rest are generally referred to as donkey wallopers or cav ( bit too yankee).
(German accent)- Mein Gott the Tankies are kicking off down Mindener Strasse again!
(2nd German)- Ja, 7 Sigs they never learn !
by I ain't that daft February 15, 2005
Get the tankie mug.
an adjective used to describe those who have the capacity to consume food or drink in an unusual, extreme, or sometimes lethal manner.
Tom: John went back to the buffet 8 times!

Pete: Wow, he's a real tankie!
by Kash09 January 12, 2008
Get the tankie mug.