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Is U.S. President Donald Trump right to be sympathetic toward Russia?Under President Vladimir Putin, the country has reverted to Cold War tactics against domestic dissidents and foreign targets, including the United States.Putin's government has flooded the West with so many spies that there are now more in Britain than during the Cold War. Surely Trump is wrong to trust Russia's most ruthless leader since Stalin.But how big a threat does Russia actually pose to the West? After all, Russia has generally upheld its arms-control agreements with the U.S. And while Russia is beefing up its armed forces and introducing new battle tanks from an old rusting base, it does not have the economic and industrial might to sustain any long-term war effort – and its leaders know this.It is only a matter of time before jihadis begin to seek vengeance against Russia, rather than the West.It missed its opportunity to reassure a democratic Russia that it sought cooperation, and its apparent disdain created the conditions for Putin to emerge.Like Trump today, former U.S. President George W. Bush and former British Prime Minister Tony Blair initially saw Putin as a man with whom they could do business.
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