WMDs and true believers
There are those who remain convinced that prewar intelligence was not incorrect--that Saddam was still cranking out WMDs prior to the war, and that these weapons are hidden somewhere and could be found if a proper search were ever to be mounted.
And, according to this NY Times article, this group is not limited to fringe-y lunatics. Those espousing the view, and who are still trying actively engage an effective search, include such figures as:
...retired Air Force lieutenant general, Thomas G. McInerney, a commentator on the Fox News Channel who has broadcast that weapons are in three places in Syria and one in Lebanon, moved there with Russian help on the eve of the war.
"I firmly believe that, and everything I learn makes my belief firmer," said Mr. McInerney, who retired in 1994. "I'm amazed that the mainstream media hasn't picked this up."
Also among the weapons hunters is Duane R. Clarridge, a long-retired officer of the Central Intelligence Agency who said he thought that the weapons had been moved to Sudan by ship.
"And we think we know which ship," Mr. Clarridge said in a recent interview.
Are these guys the equivalent, on the right, of those who believe that 9/11 was planned and orchestrated by Bush (the latter of whom, by the way, are not shy about spamming me to tell me so, day after livelong day)?
No; McInerney and Clarridge seem more rooted in realistic possibilities, although I have come to believe that the probability of their being correct at this point is 10% or less (and probably much less, at that).
But the task of ascertaining whether any post-1991 WMDs are still kicking around somewhere is a difficult one. How can one prove whether something purported to be hidden does or does not exist?
The only way the issue could be absolutely resolved is by either of these two things occurring:
(1) A post-1991 WMD cache is found; or
(2) Every inch of the earth, including underground to a reasonable depth, is searched and found to be empty of post-1991 WMDs.
Since #2 is not possible, the possibility of #1 remains, although the likelihood of its occurrence shrinks over time.
When a person is heavily invested in a particular thing being true, it is ordinarily very difficult to give up the idea that it is so. This is the case whether the believer is on the left or on the right. In my opinion, those in the middle are less likely to be so firmly anchored to their beliefs in the face of overwhelming evidence, for the simple reason that their identities are not so deeply and rigidly tied to them in the first place.