Is United States Defense Secretary Ash Carter full of crap?

Remember those U.S. Navy riverine command boats that ended up in Iranian waters? And those American sailors that were detained by the Iranian military for a day? That Carter and the Pentagon said on Friday was all caused when a “navigation error” made the watercraft drift into the hostile area near Farsi Island in the Persian Gulf (which Iran corroborated)?

According to a new report released by United States Central Command on Monday, that’s a lie. Because their new account says that “one of the boats’ diesel engines began to have trouble while it traveled from Kuwait to Bahrain. The crew began trouble shooting and the second boat also stopped.”

This from NPR:

“This stop occurred in Iranian territorial waters, although it’s not clear the crew was aware of their exact location,” CENTCOM said in a press release. “While the RCBs were stopped and the crew was attempting to evaluate the mechanical issue, Iranian boats approached the vessels.”

The two sides traded words but not fire. Armed Iranian military personnel boarded the two American vessels while other Iranians kept watch behind machine guns mounted on their vessels.

At gunpoint, the Americans were taken to a small port facility on Farsi Island.

CENTCOM also reports that while none of the sailors were physically harmed, two SIM card from a couple of satellite phones belonging to the U.S. Navy were stolen.

This is from our story that was published on Friday:

“The information that they have given us, and through their commanders is that they did stray accidentally into Iranian waters due to a navigation error,” Carter said at U.S. Southern Command in Miami. “So that seems to be the original cause of this, according to the interviews that we have done.”

Pretty straightforward question to ask in an interview. “Hey sailor, how did this happen?” Did the boat stop working, or did you get lost?

Either those reporting to him are lying, or Carter is. In any event, the truth shouldn’t be this difficult to find, and in turn, report.

Then again, the Pentagon has gotten pretty used to mincing words when it comes to missteps, especially lately.