Semantics are everything in a speech, aren't they?
“Where mistakes have been made, the responsibility lies with me,” he said.
I love that. Notice how he simultaneously acknowledges "mistakes" but does not say directly "I am responsible for the mistakes that *I* made."
So, he looks reasonable and presidential by taking responsibility, for having the buck stop with him (cue the Fox News people cooing about how big it was of him to do so), and yet never ever says, "I take responsibility for MY mistakes, including not listening to my military advisers, refusing to see reality in a situation in which I have zero experience (unless you count maybe flying a plane in the national guard for one day back in the 60's), and calling into question the patriotism of anyone who has questioned my mistakes throughout the past four years."
Now THAT would have been a speech to remember. This one? Just more of the same: smoke and mirrors for those not really paying attention, "leadership" for those still devoted enough to be blind, and one more example of George Bush fiddling while Rome burns.
Oh--and one of the best lines about the next year requiring more "patience, sacrifice and resolve?" What sacrifices have Americans not in uniform (or related to those in uniform) made, exactly? We've enjoyed tax CUTS, we've perseverated on Britney and K-Fed, we've done anything BUT sacrifice in any real way. If the President was really serious about us coming together with American resolve to make it through the next year, he'd find a way to responsibly pay for this war, he'd stop demonizing Americans who, in good faith and with the full weight of American democracy behind them, question his decisions--and he'd pray every night on his knees for forgiveness for starting something he didn't know how to finish.