Obama to Critics: Syria Backlash Is 'Horses---' Reacts to growing criticism over keeping distance By Matt Cantor, Newser User Posted Aug 12, 2014 12:18 PM CDT 87 comments Comments President Barack Obama speaks about developments in Iraq, Monday, Aug. 11, 2014, from Chilmark, Mass. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin) (Newser) – President Obama has faced some tough criticism lately over his reluctance to get more involved in Syria; not least among his vocal critics is Hillary Clinton. But it seems he's tired of the complaints from both parties. When Republican Sen. Bob Corker asked a wide-ranging and critical question about foreign policy, including Syria, at a July 31 meeting, Obama provided a detailed answer—before slapping the notion that arming the rebels could have improved the Syria situation. That idea is "horses—-," he said, according to a lawmaker who attended the meeting and spilled the beans to the Daily Beast. The White House noted that such an exchange had taken place, though neither it nor any lawmakers have acknowledged any coarse language, the Daily Beast and Politico note. "The president still feels very strongly that we are deluding ourselves if we think American intervention in Syria early on by assisting these rebels would have made a difference," says Democratic Rep. Eliot Engel. "I disagree, respectfully. They were not looking for US troops, they were looking for help, and the Syria civil war started with the most noblest of causes."