It looks like Bush decided to take the bullying, daddy-figure route (the wrong one) with Putin. That press conference yesterday will not sit well with Putin, and he, like any other world leader, doesn't appreciate being called by his first name or as "fella" in front of the world's press (and probably not even in private).
Bush could have made his point more diplomatically and without arrogance that he achieved (in words anyway) what he wanted in his private meetings with Putin. Sure, we want Russia to continue on the path to democracy, but we shouldn't make public comments about it as if we're playing cop to make sure it happens. We're not talking about Iraq, Iran or Syria here.
As I predicted in my last post, Putin wanted to address world issues (such as terrorism) in a world forum. Bush had the opportunity to publicly get reassurance on the democracy issue from Putin, then give him the chance to be a world leader (addressing issues that a Blair or Chirac would discuss in this type of situation). He could have done a better job positioning Putin as our partner, rather than one of our "followers." Bush couldn't resist his Texas-style arrogance and bullying. It was subtle, but obvious. Putin undoubtedly faces some humiliation in his own circles.
Let us not forget that Putin was the top guy at the KGB. He will get his revenge, but it will be served cold.
As Russia became friend, it can become enemy again. Fast. Anyone who thinks this is hyperbole, and who believes that Russia is no longer a threat, should read some history books.
That includes our President.