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The solution to the crisis in Ukraine lies partly in Syria.Many argue that Obama's climb down from missile strikes against Syria last August emboldened Russian President Vladimir Putin to annex Crimea. A U.S. strike against the Syrian government now would change the entire dynamic.The irony is that Putin is now seeking to do in Ukraine what Assad has done so successfully: portray a legitimate political opposition as a gang of thugs and terrorists, while relying on provocations and lies to turn nonviolent protest into attacks that justify an armed response.Putin may believe, as Western powers have repeatedly told their own citizens, that NATO forces will never risk a nuclear war by deploying in Ukraine.Putting force on the table in resolving the Ukraine crisis, even force used in Syria, is particularly important because economic pressure on Russia, as critical as it is in the Western portfolio of responses, can create a perverse incentive for Putin.
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