(FOX NEWS) President Obama is facing intense criticism for admitting Thursday “we don’t have a strategy yet” for dealing with Islamic State militants in Syria, despite warnings from top military advisers and others that the group must be confronted on that side of the border.

The president made the comment during a briefing with reporters in which he overtly played down the prospect of any imminent military action in Syria. He tried to temper speculation that he was about to roll out a “full scale” strategy, one that might expand the current, limited airstrike campaign in northern Iraq.

“I don’t want to put the cart before the horse. We don’t have a strategy yet,” Obama said.

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