Blair is asked about his mistakes. Iraq was not one of them.

Needless to say, when you actually ask what these mistakes might be, he trots out an old line about how he wished he had rolled out his reforms – in education and health – much faster.

The Iraq War, which lots of us regard as a mistake, in its execution as well as its principle, is something that he still stands by – though it’s interesting that he talks about regime change so openly, so unblinkingly, now, when this was not at all the reason we were given for going to war (we were told that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, which he did not).

‘I’ve no regrets about that decision because it was difficult to get rid of Saddam, but leaving him would also have been difficult, and when I look at the region now, I think it would be a lot more complicated [were he still there].’

But is this true? I would say that the hand of Iran has simply been strengthened, with all the attendant problems that brings.

‘I completely reject that thesis. The reason why this problem is there in the region with this extremism is not because Saddam Hussein is not there to keep a grip on it. That is absurd.’

Was it a lonely decision, the move to war?

‘All these decisions are lonely.’ Is he someone who makes a decision and then moves on? Or does he make a decision and then worry away at it?

‘I think I’m more the first. The one duty you owe people is to be decisive. I started as a politician who was anxious to please people, and I ended as a politician who understood that my duty was to do what was right. Perpetual agonising is not helpful.’

With regard to the editorializing in the above quote about the reasons for the war, it should be made clear that Blair was very open about the problems with leaving Saddam in power prior to the war.

If the result of peace is Saddam staying in power, not disarmed, then I tell you there are consequences paid in blood for that decision too.

But these victims will never be seen.

They will never feature on our TV screens or inspire millions to take to the streets. But they will exist nonetheless.

Ridding the world of Saddam would be an act of humanity. It is leaving him there that is in truth inhumane.

The moral case against war has a moral answer: it is the moral case for removing Saddam. It is not the reason we act. That must be according to the UN mandate on weapons of mass destruction.

But it is the reason, frankly, why if we do have to act, we should do so with a clear conscience.

Yes, there are consequences of war. If we remove Saddam by force, people will die and some will be innocent. And we must live with the consequences of our actions, even the unintended ones.

But there are also consequences of ‘stop the war’.

If I took that advice, and did not insist on disarmament, yes, there would be no war.

But there would still be Saddam.