Here's my example: "If we all agree on the basic terms, can we do a proper agreement next week."
Can this be construed (in the proper context) as: "Since we all agree, can we etc."?
The entry for "if" in the Oxford English Dictionary (online edition) begins with:
I. Introducing a clause of condition or supposition (the protasis of a conditional sentence): On condition that; given or granted that; in (the) case that; supposing that; on the supposition that. and continues: 1. With the conditional clause or protasis in the indicative. The indicative after if implies that the speaker expresses no adverse opinion as to the truth of the statement in the clause; it is consistent with his acceptance of it.
The entry even notes that in some cases the indicative is preferred.
The Random House Dictionary similarly opens with the definition:
- In case that; granting or supposing that; on condition that.
On the other hand, in logical or Boolean syntax, if is always a conditional.
But is that necessarily the case in idiomatic or everyday usage? Some might argue that there is a supposition missing in the bare if, but that is precisely my question: can if be understood as assuming the fulfilled conditional, such as in since?