I fear you may be correct. This only makes sense as part of a much larger power play. Putin sees that Russia is still a marginalized country. He may be fearing losing his grip on power. He is going to lash out in order to assert Russia as a world power and the fuck the rest of the world. We are close to the end of the world as we know it.
What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence. -Christopher Hitchens
Facts don't lie or have an agenda. Facts are just facts
"God did it" is not an argument. It is an excuse for intellectual laziness.
If your viewpoint has merits and facts to back it up why would you have to lie?