Analysis: Did Syria’s Assad get away with chemical weapons attack? "Somehow, Assad not only got away with the gas attack, but appears to have also emerged stronger after it. How is that possible? Russian President Vladimir Putin had a lot to do with it. By stepping into the standoff between Syria and the U.S., he tossed Assad a lifeline that also allowed President Barack Obama to forgo intervening in a conflict most Americans wanted no part in after a decade of costly wars in distant Muslim lands." I thought the comments thread on Guardian pieces sometimes entirely miss the point, but at least they don't have Obama Is A Terrorist Who Will Kill Millions, which I'm sure is a sincerely held belief, if a crazy one.