But is that true? I always thought not only that there were no WMD, but that everyone knew that. I thought, furthermore, that we invaded because there were no weapons of significance to oppose us. As contrasted to Korea for example, , where the most appalling things happen, but which possessed WMD, and so was too dangerous to invade.
I moreover assumed that Tony Blair knew, always knew from the start, that there were no WMD, but gambled that victory alone, and the publication of the awful things he correctly anticipated would be found in Iraq, would bring round public opinion in retrospect even in the absence of WMD. (As for George Bush, his mindset is so different from my own I can't map his thought processes accurately, I don't think issues of truth as I understand them have the same significance, but this is just a guess).
But were there ever people who sincerely, in their hearts, thought these weapons existed? Does it even make sense to talk about sincerity in connection with global politics?
I wonder in the same way whether there are people who really think in all sincerity that (say) 'The Rapture' will happen one day, or that they have been abducted and returned by aliens, that god made the world four thousand years ago. What does 'sincerely believe' mean? What is it like to be inside someone else's head?
Perhaps my friend is right, and it is like 1984, but the bit near to the end, where he doesn't know how many fingers he can see.