...had totally gotten the best of President Obama on the world stage during the Syrian crisis.
But since then, relations between the two had stabilized.
Vladimir Putin had just finished hosting the Sochi Olympics...
The protests were over the then-Ukrainian president's decision to break off talks with the European Union and bring the country closer to Russia instead.
Putin was very upset that other nations would not want to be closer to Russia.
And was severely threatened by anti-government developments in Ukraine.
But the destabilization of the region provided Putin with a big opportunity.
On March 1, Putin asked Russia’s parliament for permission to use Russian troops to "defend" Crimea and Ukraine.
On Sunday, Putin sent thousands of armed Russian troops into Crimea and met no resistance.
Pro-Russian demonstrations also popped up in the region, although reports point to many of the protesters being shipped in from Russia.
This Russian occupation was in clear violation of international law and made Obama very sad.
Obama's immediate response was to call on Russia to voluntarily pull out of the region.
Putin responded by sending more troops.
Now Obama is threatening economic and political sanctions against Russia...
...which is particularly difficult given the administration's overt attempt to repair relations with Putin over the last five years.
Obama also has the extremely difficult task of rallying other European and Western leaders into a coalition against Russia.
Which they may be reluctant to do since so much of Europe's energy supply comes from Russia.
Obama has sent Secretary of State John Kerry to Kiev to facilitate the first steps for Ukraine to receive Western financial assistance.
But there are no signs that Putin has any intention of backing down...
...or that his occupation will end with just the Crimea region.
Meanwhile, the West is left, once again, begging for a peaceful solution...