TIME

U.S.-Russia tensions reach dangerous new level

Russian President Vladimir Putin wants to make his country a global player once more

EVERY DAY AMERICAN PILOTS fly scores of sorties against terrorist targets in Syria. And on every mission, the pilots watch their instruments for signs that one of the Syrian government’s thousands of surface-to-air missiles, including Russian batteries possibly manned by Russian military advisers, is preparing to blow them out of the sky.

The pilots aren’t the only ones worrying. The dangerous consequences of an accidental U.S.-Russian confrontation in Syria

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