From a Bret Stephens column on the “Gulf of Oman” crisis:
Trump might be a liar, but the U.S. military isn’t. There are lingering questions about the types of munitions that hit the ships, and time should be given for a thorough investigation. But it would require a large dose of self-deception (or conspiracy theorizing) to pretend that Iran isn’t the likely culprit, or that its actions don’t represent a major escalation in the region.
How many fallacies do you see there? I was at first tempted to count two.
The first is a begged question: the U.S. military’s version of the event is true because the U.S. military doesn’t lie.
The second is either a poisoned well or two of them: if you don’t believe the U.S. military’s version of the story, you are (1) self-deceived or (2) engaged in conspiracy theorizing. Continue reading