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Biden & Putin’s Years-in-the-Making Faceoff Over Ukraine | Putin and the Presidents

24 Jan 2023
By the time Russian President Vladimir Putin met with U.S. President Joe Biden in June 2021 for a summit in Geneva, Switzerland, the two men already had a long and contentious history. Watch an excerpt from “Putin and the Presidents.”

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Drawing on in-depth conversations with insiders from five U.S. presidential administrations, former U.S. intelligence leaders, diplomats, Russian politicians, authors and journalists, “Putin and the Presidents” reveals how the miscalculations and missteps of multiple American presidents over two decades paved the way for Putin’s attack on Ukraine — and offers unique insight into the relationship between Putin and Biden.

“They're children of the Cold War and they see each other and their countries through the Cold War,” Peter Baker of The New York Times says of the two men in the above excerpt from “Putin and the Presidents.” “Biden saw Putin for what he is: a KGB revanchist who wants to remake the Russian empire.”

Read more about Biden and Putin’s history:

For the full story, watch “Putin and the Presidents.” The documentary will be available to stream on FRONTLINE’s YouTube channel, in the PBS App and at starting Tues., Jan. 24, at 7/6c. It will air on PBS Tues., Jan. 31, at 10/9c (check local listings).

“Putin and the Presidents” is a FRONTLINE production with the Kirk Documentary Group. The director is Michael Kirk. The producers are Michael Kirk, Mike Wiser and Vanessa Fica. The writers are Michael Kirk and Mike Wiser. The reporter is Vanessa Fica. The editor-in-chief and executive producer of FRONTLINE is Raney Aronson-Rath.

Explore additional reporting on "Putin and the Presidents" on our website:

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FRONTLINE is produced at GBH in Boston and is broadcast nationwide on PBS. Funding for FRONTLINE is provided through the support of PBS viewers and by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Additional support for FRONTLINE is provided by the Abrams Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Park Foundation, the Heising-Simons Foundation, and the FRONTLINE Journalism Fund, with major support from Jon and Jo Ann Hagler on behalf of the Jon L. Hagler Foundation, and additional support from Koo and Patricia Yuen.
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