Transcript for Objecting to a Cold War Mentality, Obama Snubs Russian President
news tonight about the snub heard around the world. President obama has cancelled an upcoming summit, a meeting with russian president putin. It was to be next month. He did it right after russia gave nsa leaker asylum and tonight two of the most powerful leaders on the planet are shadow boxing as the world watches. Here's jonathan karl. Reporter: The last time these two got together the body language spoke louder than their words, sometimes grimacing, never geeing on much of anything. Now a new low, not just for putin and obama, but for russia and the u.S. For the first time since the cold war, a u.S. President is cancelling a publicly announced meeting in russia. It's not just putin's decision to grant asylum to fugitive nsa leaker edward snowden. He has also defied the u.S. By selling heavy weapons to the syrian government as its accused of slaughtering its own people. The president vented about it last night with jay leno. There have been times where they slipped back into cold war thinking and a coal war mentality. What I say to president putin is, that's the past. Putin seems to be like one of those old school kgb guys. He headed up the kgb. orter: TODAY IN A SPEECH, The president alluded to the bigger crises he is confronting, the terror threats that has forced the closing of embassies throughout the middle east. Here's what those who would cowardly attack our civilians forget. The united states is never going to retreat from the world. Reporter: The embassies will remain closed until at least the end of the week. As one senior official told me tonight, the threat is not over. Diane? Thank you.
This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.