Musk rejects begging to boost Starlink over Ukraine: ‘We will not enable escalation of conflict that may lead to WW3’

Elon Musk rejected a plea by former astronaut and current liberal Scott Kelly after he begged him to boost Starlink over Ukraine to aid the armed forces there following the company restricting the country’s military access to the service, especially when it comes to grenade-carrying drones.

“Ukraine desperately needs your continued support. Defense from a genocidal invasion is not an offensive capability. It’s survival. Innocent lives will be lost. You can help. Thank you,” Kelly tweeted to the SpaceX CEO on Saturday.

“You’re smart enough not to fall for media and other propaganda. Starlink is the main source of communication for Ukraine, especially at the front lines where almost all other internet connections have been lost. However, we will not contribute to escalation of conflict that could lead to World War III,” Musk shot back, chastising the Democrat.

Gwynne Shotwell, who is the President of SpaceX, announced last week that the company would continue to limit Ukraine’s access to Starlink for military purposes, according to the Daily Mail. Musk previously pointed out that the service was not designed for offensive or military operations.

Shotwell noted that Starlink could be used for communications and humanitarian efforts such as connecting families with hospitals.

Musk intended that Starlink be used by Ukrainians to establish uninterrupted, independent, and secure Internet access after the Russians destroyed the country’s telecommunications infrastructure. Since then, the service has become the only means of communication for the Ukrainian military on the frontlines.

Ukrainians are reportedly using Starlink satellites for military drones carrying anti-tank grenades that are being utilized to take out Russian tanks and army trucks.

“Over 100 cruise missiles attacked energy and communications infrastructure,” Mykhailo Fedorov, Vice Prime Minister of Ukraine and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine, announced last October. “But with Starlink, we quickly restored the connection in critical areas. Starlink continues to be an essential part of critical infrastructure.”

Musk tweeted in September that Starlink was intended for peaceful use only. He flatly stated that the terms of use specify that it was not intended for military activities.

The terms of service make that assertion abundantly clear, “Starlink is not designed or intended for use with or in offensive or defensive weaponry or other comparable end-uses.”

To ensure that Starlink antennas are not used to pilot drones, Musk has limited the use of the antennas by the Ukrainian armed forces.

“A year of resistance & companies have to decide: either they are on the side of & the right to freedom, and don’t seek ways to do harm. Or they are on RF’s side & its ‘right’ to kill & seize territories. #SpaceX (Starlink) & Mrs. #Shotwell should choose a specific option,” Mykhailo Podolyak, who is a senior adviser to Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky tweeted.

Musk does not appear to intend to budge on the subject for now. The restriction is approaching its one-year anniversary and there are no signs that it will be removed.

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