Elon Musk snubs ex-Nasa astronaut over Starlink for Ukraine

Posted February 14, 2023 by: Admin #News

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has faced criticism from former NASA astronaut Scott Kelly over his decision to restrict Ukraine’s military access to the company’s high-speed broadband system, Starlink.


Kelly took to Twitter on Saturday, calling on Musk to support Ukraine and provide aid to the country’s armed forces, who are currently defending against a genocidal invasion. In response, Musk defended his stance, stating that while Starlink is a crucial source of communication for Ukraine, especially at the frontlines where almost all other internet connections have been lost, he will not contribute to the escalation of conflict that could lead to a third world war.

SpaceX’s President, Gwynne Shotwell, announced last week that the company was limiting Ukraine’s use of Starlink for military purposes, as the broadband service was not designed for offensive or military operations. Shotwell emphasized that the service could still be used for typical communications and humanitarian efforts such as connecting families and hospitals. Despite the Russian destruction of Ukraine’s telecommunications infrastructure, Starlink satellites have become the primary means of communication for the Ukrainian armed forces on the frontlines, helping Ukrainian military drones successfully destroy Russian tanks and army trucks.


The conflict between Ukraine and Russia is approaching its one-year anniversary

In September of last year, Musk took to Twitter to clarify that Starlink was meant for peaceful use only and the terms of service specify that the internet connections should not be used for military activities. This is supported by the Starlink terms of service document, which clearly states that the system is not designed or intended for use with or in offensive or defensive weaponry or other comparable end-uses.

Despite the urging of Mykhailo Podolyak, a senior adviser to Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelensky, Musk remains firm in his stance, with SpaceX taking steps to ensure that Starlink antennas are not used for military purposes. The conflict between Ukraine and Russia is approaching its one-year anniversary, and it remains to be seen how this issue will be resolved.



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