The disconnect is so profound that it often seems Mr. Trump is pursuing one Russia policy, set on ushering in a gauzy new era of cooperation with Mr. Putin, while the rest of his administration is pursuing another, set on countering a revanchist power that the White House has labeled one of the greatest threats to American security and prosperity.

As Mr. Trump prepares to meet with Mr. Putin in Finland, diplomats and former government officials said these contradictions would undermine both the president’s efforts to cultivate a relationship with Mr. Putin and his government’s efforts to halt Russia’s campaigns to damage American democratic institutions and bully its neighbors.

“The president has hobbled his own executive branch, and the executive branch has hobbled its own president,” said Strobe Talbott, a Russia expert who served as deputy secretary of state in the Clinton administration and was president of the Brookings Institution. “It’s a three-legged race with the contestants going in opposite directions.”