Putin's main interest in Syria is the U.S. not having any influence in the region.<quoted text>
Yes Obama was played.
However, the other option was just as unattractive. Risking weakening Assad to the point that his Army couldn't secure the CW from the al Qaeda.
Putin is a brutal man, no doubt. But he is also a focused man. Having faced his own challenges from unpredictable Jihadist, he probably didn't blink at them being gassed. But, he has an interest in ensuring the CW does not fall into a radical groups hands.
This administration knew about the chemical weapons in Syria long before it got to this point.
Why did this president wait until the last minute to rally support?