Putin would never have agreed to the suggestion to disarm his last ME client state, Syria, without the threat of US military action.
The Russians knew exactly the extent and location of the chemical weapons.....they were the main supplier.
They were also alert to the likelihood of those weapons turning up in the hands of Muslim extremists in Russia.
The prospect of a 'nuclear showdown' over Syria is just your wet dream, Gaffney. Not a hope in hell that was going to happen. But keep dreaming.