Elon Musk, Chief Government Officer of SpaceX and Tesla and proprietor of Twitter, appears to be like on as he attends the Viva Know-how convention devoted to innovation and startups on the Porte de Versailles exhibition centre in Paris, France, June 16, 2023.
Gonzalo Fuentes | Reuters
Creator Walter Isaacson took to social media Friday night time to attempt to “make clear” an excerpt from his upcoming ebook, “Elon Musk.” The excerpt acquired swift backlash after it described how Musk thwarted a Ukrainian assault on Russian warships.
Isaacson’s excerpt claims that Musk, the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, ordered engineers to close off Starlink’s satellite tv for pc community over Crimea final yr with the intention to disrupt a Ukrainian army initiative. Musk’s Starlink terminals arrived within the early days of Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine as Western governments labored to produce Kyiv with artillery and air protection methods.
Musk ultimately soured on the association and mentioned “Starlink was not meant to be concerned in wars,” in response to the ebook. The tech billionaire advised Isaacson he was anxious the Ukrainian assault on Russian vessels would provoke the Kremlin into launching a nuclear conflict.
However in a submit on X, previously generally known as Twitter, late Friday, Isaacson shared new particulars.
“To make clear on the Starlink situation: the Ukrainians THOUGHT protection was enabled all the way in which to Crimea, however it was not,” Isaacson wrote. “They requested Musk to allow it for his or her drone sub assault on the Russian fleet. Musk didn’t allow it, as a result of he thought, most likely accurately, that will trigger a serious conflict.”
Crimea is a peninsula on the Black Sea that Russia illegally annexed from Ukraine in 2014, and it’s dwelling to Russia’s Black Sea warships. Within the days following Russia’s full-scale invasion in February 2022, the Black Sea fleet fired missiles on once-industrious Ukrainian coastal cities whereas imposing a devastating naval blockade.
Isaacson’s X submit got here after a prime aide to Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy lashed out at Musk over the excerpt.
“By not permitting Ukrainian drones to destroy a part of the Russian army fleet through Starlink interference, Elon Musk allowed this fleet to fireside Kalibr missiles at Ukrainian cities,” Mykhailo Podolyak wrote Thursday on social media after CNN reported on a few of the particulars from Isaacson’s ebook.
“In consequence, civilians, youngsters are being killed. That is the value of a cocktail of ignorance and large ego,” he added.
Isaacson’s full ebook will probably be launched Tuesday.
— CNBC’s Amanda Macias contributed to this report.