I'm not sure I buy everything, but I think if he had said this bit months ago, he'd have been better off, politically:
When we made the decision to go into Iraq, many intelligence agencies around the world judged that Saddam possessed weapons of mass destruction. This judgment was shared by the intelligence agencies of governments who did not support my decision to remove Saddam. And it is true that much of the intelligence turned out to be wrong.Revisionist? Perhaps, but not outlandishly so. This is also the first time he's even given lip service to acknowledging his critics. I'm hopeful without being optimistic that this continues and expands.
As president, I am responsible for the decision to go into Iraq. And I'm also responsible for fixing what went wrong by reforming our intelligence capabilities. And we are doing just that.
At the same time, we must remember that an investigations after the war by chief weapons inspector Charles Duelfer found that Saddam was using the U.N. oil-for-food program to influence countries and companies in an effort to undermine sanctions, with the intent of restarting his weapons programs once the sanctions collapsed and the world looked the other way.
Given Saddam's history, and the lessons of September 11, my decision to remove Saddam Hussein was the right decision. Saddam was a threat, and the American people and the world is better off because he is no longer in power.