Obama Responds to Critics of Syrian Strategy

The president discusses Syria and alleged NSA leaker in an interview with Charlie Rose.
2:12 | 06/18/13

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Transcript for Obama Responds to Critics of Syrian Strategy
Now to more from president obama. He spoke out as we saw not only about edward snowden's revelations but also syria and so much more in an interview released overnight. Our chief white house correspondent jon karl is traveling with the president in ireland. Good morning, jon. Reporter: Good morning, george. As the president wraps up his meetings with world leaders here he is pushing back hard against critics at home saying he's not doing enough about the crisis in syria. Behind all the smiles at the annual summit of the world's economic powers, big disagreement between russia and the united states about what to do over the crisis in syria. In the interview with charlie rose for pbs, president obama lashed out at criho say his offer of small arms to the syrian rebels is too little too late. If you haven't been in the situation room poring through intelligence and meeting directly with our military folks, unless you've been involved in those conversations, then it's kind of hard for you to understand that the complexities of the situation and how we have to not rush into one more war in the middle east. Reporter: The president also weighed in on iran and their recent election of a relatively moderate president. I think it says that the iranian people want to move in a different direction, clearly you have a hunger within iran to engage with the international community in a more positive way. Reporter: And closer to home, president obama defended newly revealed nsa programs including those gathering data on americans. Some people say, well, you know, obama was this raving liberal before. Now he's, y know, dick cheney, dick cheney sometimes says, yeah, he took it all lock, stock and barrel. My concern has always been that we shouldn't do intelligence gathering to prevent terrorism but rather are we setting up a systems of checks and balances? Reporter: This afternoon president obama travels to berlin. While there he will give a speech at the historic brandenburg gate 50 years after john kennedy gave his famous e speech. It was during the 2008 campaign when he addressed one of his largest audiences ever.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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