Elon Musk isn’t backing down regarding tweets that were “pro-Putin. Sen. Lindsey Graham called out the Tesla founder’s comments on the Ukraine invasion saying they were “dumb.”
The senator made his comments after stating that he respected the billionaire, but he said that Musk needed to understand the facts of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in a Wednesday Twitter post.
“Suggesting we end the Russian invasion by simply giving Russia parts of Ukraine – after all the suffering – is dumb. It is also an affront to the bravery of the Ukrainians fighting to defend their homeland,” Sen. Graham wrote.
Lindsey Graham also said that the signing of the Budapest Memorandum in 1994 involved the nation of Ukraine giving up its nuclear weapons arsenal, and in exchange, they were promised protection of its territorial integrity.
The senator noted that this agreement was signed by Russia and it included the protection of both Crimea and Donbas as territories belonging to Ukraine.
Graham said that if we want peace, “which we all do,” he added, then we should simply demand that Russia honor the boundaries that were agreed upon in the 1994 memorandum and that would mean Russia withdraws its forces.
“If Elon Musk and others want the world to continue to be in chaos, then by all means capitulate to Putin and reward his aggression,” the senator said.
Musk doubled down in his response to Sen. Graham saying that eastern portions of the territory in question preferred Russia and he said the will of the people there matters.
“Assuming you believe that the will of the people matters, we should, in any given conflict region, support the will of those who live there. Most of Ukraine unequivocally wants to be part of Ukraine, but some eastern portions have Russian majorities and prefer Russia,” Musk said.
Sen. Graham also tweeted that the electric vehicle tax credit should be revisited. And Musk shot back saying that Tesla hasn’t had the consumer tax credit for years and they didn’t ask for this new one. He said General Motors and Ford asked for it.
Graham wasn’t the only one who took issue with Musk’s post about the Ukraine invasion. President Volodymyr Zelensky called it “insane.”
Earlier Zelensky praised Musk for his “Starlink,” and the role it has played in connecting Ukraine to the rest of the world.
At one point this last Spring Must challenge Vladimir Putin to a fight for Ukraine. He used the Russian alphabet to write Putin’s name and wrote that he hereby challenged Putin to single combat, “Stakes are Ukraine,” he continued and wrote in the country’s own language.
But now, the Kremlin has praised Musk for the tweet calling for the end of the war and giving Russia some of the territories.
Putin’s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told reporters that Musk’s message was “positive,” and that, unlike other professional diplomats, the Tesla and SpaceX CEO were looking for ways to arrive at peace. He also told the Russian media that peace was impossible if Russia’s conditions were not fulfilled.
Using the same “poll” structure as Musk’s tweet about Ukraine and Russia, Zelensky tweeted his own poll asking users which Musk they liked better: the one who supports Russia or the one who supports Ukraine.
“I still very much support Ukraine, but am convinced that massive escalation of the war will cause great harm to Ukraine and possibly the world,” Musk tweeted in response to Zelensky’s poll.
It’s hard to imagine where Musk got his information about portions of Ukraine preferring Russia. Ukrainians have consistently vocalized that they do not want to be ruled by Moscow. In 1991, Ukrainians across the country overwhelmingly voted in favor of becoming independent.
It’s clear, Musk has listened to Putin’s talking points instead of the Ukrainian people.