President Vladimir Putin's diplomacy has been much admired here in Moscow, and elsewhere as well.
He faced an apparently reluctant American president, and has given him a way out with his offer yesterday - an offer which the Americans appear to have accepted with both hands.
Then suddenly today, came the conditions: That the US must renounce the use of force.
In other words, don't go to the UN and try to get a Security Council resolution that says that force can be used if the Syrian's don't hand over their chemical weapons.
What Putin has done is to get a president who was beating the drum for war on the basis that there was no alternative, to accept now that there is an alternative.
But can President Obama now go back and pick up the rhythm of those war drums again?
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