Monday, the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) claimed Ukraine was the culprit in the assassination of Darya Dugina, the daughter of Alexander Dugin, the man who is known by the name Vladimir Putin's Rasputin. As RedState reported, Dugina was killed late on Saturday night in Moscow. Her vehicle then was destroyed. There's speculation on the possibility that Alexander Dugin was the target and managed to escape when he decided to take another vehicle home instead of riding with his daughter, as he had intended, or Dugina herself was the one who was targeted.
However, it was widely believed that should Russia might in any way blame this to Ukraine, that hostilities could rapidly and significantly increase and escalate, therefore it's not unexpected that a Security alert came out late on Monday by the State Department warning US citizens to evacuate Ukraine immediately. The alert did not take into account however, the obvious cause:
The State Department has information that Russia is increasing its efforts to strike the civilian infrastructure in Ukraine as well as government buildings in the coming days. Russian attacks in Ukraine continue to pose a risk to civilians and infrastructure. There is a need for the U.S. Embassy to urge U.S. citizens to leave Ukraine today using privately-operated transport options on the ground in the event that they are able to take the necessary steps.
Ukrainian government officials deny involvement, however, according to the FSB, the assassin was a woman Ukrainian Special Services Contractor. BBC reports:
The FSB informed Russian media that an Ukrainian woman moved from Ukraine to Russia in July along with her daughter, but that she was actually a Ukrainian contractor for special services.
The woman, as it was reported, was a tenant in the same property as Ms. Dugina for a month while preparing in advance for an attack. During that period, she allegedly accompanied Ms Dugina around Moscow in the mini-van Mini Cooper – for which she had three different license plates.
The suspect then fled to Estonia, the FSB confirmed.
Apart from being an employee of Ukraine's special services, Russia's FSB declares that the assassin was an officer of the Ukraine's Azov battalion that Russia has declared an organization of terrorists.
Putin gave Dugina the Order of Courage, a famous Russian award, on Monday, “for courage and selflessness shown in the performance of professional duty,” according to the Kremlin.
Alexander Dugin and his daughter are both ultra-nationalists, who believe in unity of all the Russian-speaking regions (including the ones in Ukraine) with violence if needed. Dugin released an official statement on Telegram regarding his daughter's murder. He claimed that the only way to win in Ukraine is necessary to retaliate:
“My daughter Darya Dugina has been brutally killed before me. She was a beautiful Orthodox woman as well as a patriot, war correspondent and an expert on central TV, and a philosopher. Our hearts aren't wanting revenge or retribution. ….We only need to win. victory. My daughter gave her young woman's life at the altar of God. Therefore, please, make it happen!”
There's a lot of speculation among those who monitor Eastern Europe closely about who's the real culprit. Some think the assassination may be an outcome of a struggle for power between Russia's intelligence service and one previous Russian legislator, Ilya Ponomaryov, who's currently based within Ukraine, “said a previously unknown group of Russian militants called the National Republican Army was responsible,” according to Reuters. In Russia however, Putin doesn't really need proof. All he has to do is to claim that Ukraine is the culprit and this is enough to convince him to escalate his attack against Ukraine and, in particular, those of the Azov Battalion, while also conducting an in-depth investigation into the intelligence services of his own to determine if it is a genuine inside job. It's not a bad thing for Vladimir Putin.