With Flynn gone, Russia sees a different Trump

The champagne toasts that some Russian officials quaffed just a few short months ago to celebrate the victory of Donald J. Trump have gone a bit flat.

Euphoria was already starting to cede to caution before Michael T. Flynn, President Trump’s national security adviser and a perceived friend of Russia, resigned. That cemented the uneasy mood.

The departure of Mr. Flynn on Monday over his contacts with the Russian ambassador to Washington was the latest in a series of mixed signals from Mr. Trump and his advisers on a host of issues important to Russia, particularly the lifting of economic sanctions.

Now, many prominent political figures are wondering whether hopes for change were premature, and whether Moscow will inevitably remain Washington’s main boogeyman. On Tuesday, the Pentagon was confrontational, accusing Moscow of secretly deploying a cruise missile system that violates a 1987 treaty on intermediate-range missiles based on land.