Merkel and Putin Meet, Awkwardly

Alexander Nemenov, AFP / Getty Images

German Chancellor Angela Merkel met with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday in an encounter that demonstrated how uncomfortable the alliance between the two countries has become. Merkel came ready to question Putin on his human-rights record since reclaiming the presidency in May. Upon being asked about the sentencing of the band Pussy Riot to two years in a labor camp, Putin parried the question, resulting in an awkward silence. Although Merkel advised Putin not to take every offense so seriously, it is doubtful that her remarks will have any effect. How long will the Russia-Germany alliance last?