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Obama Saw Too Late Putin’s Return Would Undermine Reset

The fractured relationship between U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian leader Vladimir Putin has reached a critical juncture in the conflict over Ukraine, with ties between the two nations more strained than at any time since the Cold War.

Russia’s annexation of Crimea last year and its support for separatists in Ukraine’s east have soured Obama on Putin and prompted U.S.-led sanctions that have helped push Russia’s economy toward recession.