The White House was on the defensive Thursday after former President Bill Clinton told a private event that he supported a more aggressive U.S. intervention in the violent conflict gripping Syria.

White House press secretary Jay Carney.
REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

White House press secretary Jay Carney said on Thursday that President Obama would make a decision about the U.S. role in Syria on his timeline – not that of critics.

“We're assessing options all the time, including, providing weapons to the opposition,” Carney said. “The president makes a decision about the implementation of national security options based on our national security interests, not on what might satisfy critics at any given moment about a policy.”