Jake Tapper tried to stir up anger against Elon Musk based on a false story that was corrected by the source himself. Based on a biography of Elon Musk by Walter Isaacson, media reported that Mr. Musk turned off Starlink to thwart Ukrainians during a massive attack on Russian ships in Crimea.
It’s not true. Musk never cut off power because he never turned it on. Starlink was never allowed at the borders and Mr. Musk made his policy clear when he offered Starlink to Ukraine. He saved the country at that time.
Musk wrote on X: “At no point did I or anyone at SpaceX promise coverage over Crimea. Moreover, our terms of service clearly prohibit Starlink for offensive military action, as we are a civilian system, so they were again asking for something that was expressly prohibited.”
Much appreciated, Walter.
The onus is meaningfully different if I refused to act upon a request from Ukraine vs. made a deliberate change to Starlink to thwart Ukraine.
At no point did I or anyone at SpaceX promise coverage over Crimea.
Moreover, our terms of service clearly… https://t.co/jmNtScM5LY
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) September 9, 2023
What Tapper does in the clip below – knowing full well that his attack on Musk is based on disinformation – is vicious.
“SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has recently confirmed a report that’s in Walter Isaacson’s new biography of Musk that last year Musk blocked access to his Starlink satellite network in Crimea in order to disrupt a major Ukrainian attack on the Russian navy there,” Tapper said. “In other words, Musk effectively sabotaged a military operation by Ukraine, a U.S. ally, against Russia, an aggressor country that invaded a U.S. ally. Should there be repercussions for that?”
That’s the lie. He didn’t block anything in line with the policy the company had from the beginning of the war.
Blinken did not engage with Tapper and praised Starlink for their vital help in aiding Ukraine.
Tapper called it “sabotage,” again, based on something that was not true.
Tapper pressed Blinken. “I don’t know that you can’t speak to it. You won’t speak to it,” Tapper said. “Musk says he was reportedly afraid that Russia would retaliate with nuclear weapons. Musk says that’s based on his private discussions he had with senior Russian officials. Are you concerned that Musk is apparently conducting his own diplomatic outreach to the Russian government? Really, none of this concerns you?”
Blinken again did not answer the question.
“It sounds like Starlink is so important that the U.S. government doesn’t want to risk offending a capricious billionaire who did some things that I think, in another situation, the U.S. might want to say something about,” the CNN host said later in the interview.
He’s vile. Ukraine also responded similarly to the false report, and showed their lack of gratitude.
Musk is giving Ukraine communications for free, but he will not be responsible for starting a major war and will not put Starlink of the borders. He doesn’t want to start World War III.