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Critical Reasoning: Conclusion Weakening Questions

Which of the following, if true, would most weaken the author's statement that Napoleon's tactics were based on innovation and the element of surprise?

Very good!

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In this example, the battle plan thought to be Napoleon's could possibly have been copied from a British general, showing that Napoleon's tactics were not innovative. Although it is not obvious that Napoleon copied the attack plan, this answer choice is the only one which offers the possibility of weakening the author's statement.

Incorrect.

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This answer choice supports, not weakens, the author's statement, as it shows Napoleon's tactics as both innovative (new feats) and as surprising to the enemy (unpredictable in battle and expected feats).

Incorrect.

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This statement neither supports nor weakens the author's statement. The fact that Napoleon planned his moves ahead of time and kept to those plans does not prevent them from also being innovative and surprising to the enemy.

Incorrect.

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This answer choice shows that Napoleon was himself eventually surprised by his enemies. However, this shows us nothing about Napoleon's tactics.

Incorrect.

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This answer choice shows us that Napoleon's enemies copied his tactics when fighting against him. However, the fact that Napoleon's tactics were used after Napoleon had used them does not prove that Napoleon's tactics were unoriginal or not surprising to his enemies.

Napoleon's enemies often used his attack patterns when fighting against him after their allies had been defeated by Napoleon using those same tactics.
Napoleon was eventually defeated by the unexpected attack of several armies of countries he had previously occupied.
Further studies of Napoleon's battle plans show that he always planned every attack carefully and never strayed from those plans during battle.
Memoirs of Napoleon's enemies often reported that Napoleon's troops were unpredictable in battle and performed new and unexpected feats.
Battle plans of a British general were found showing a planned attack on Napoleon's troops using a strategy previously thought to be one of Napoleon's design.