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In response to pleas from Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskyy, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has promised to send additional Starlink systems to provide internet coverage in war-torn areas of the country.
In a Saturday tweet, Zelenskyy announced that he had spoken to Musk, who had promised additional Starlink support. Zelenskyy thanked Musk for "supporting Ukraine with words and deeds" and indicated that he would like to work with Musk on space projects after the war is over.
Talked to @elonmusk. I\u2019m grateful to him for supporting Ukraine with words and deeds. Next week we will receive another batch of Starlink systems for destroyed cities. Discussed possible space projects . But I\u2019ll talk about this after the war.— \u0412\u043e\u043b\u043e\u0434\u0438\u043c\u0438\u0440 \u0417\u0435\u043b\u0435\u043d\u0441\u044c\u043a\u0438\u0439 (@\u0412\u043e\u043b\u043e\u0434\u0438\u043c\u0438\u0440 \u0417\u0435\u043b\u0435\u043d\u0441\u044c\u043a\u0438\u0439) 1646521727
Musk, who is believed to be the richest person in the world, has become an important figure in the Ukraine-Russia conflict after he agreed to use Starlink systems to provide internet to areas of Ukraine where internet service had been shut off by the invading Russian army.
Musk also made news by refusing to block Russian state-owned news sources like Russia Today from being broadcast on Starlink, which he says many governments asked him to do. "We will not do so unless at gunpoint," Musk tweeted. "Sorry to be a free speech absolutist."
Starlink has been told by some governments (not Ukraine) to block Russian news sources. We will not do so unless at gunpoint.\n\nSorry to be a free speech absolutist.— Elon Musk (@Elon Musk) 1646457351
The Russian government has responded to Musk's action by attempting — apparently with some measure of success — to jam Starlink signals in the Ukraine conflict area. In a tweet last week, Musk noted that SpaceX had developed a software workaround to the Russian jamming attempts, and said that SpaceX would reprioritize its resources to promote cybersecurity to ensure that its signals could not be jammed by hostile powers in the future.
SpaceX reprioritized to cyber defense & overcoming signal jamming. \n\nWill cause slight delays in Starship & Starlink V2.— Elon Musk (@Elon Musk) 1646456364
Control over the internet and the flow of information into and out of Ukraine has been a key priority for the governments of both Ukraine and Russia during this conflict. Russia seeks to avoid broadcasting to the world or to the Ukrainian people the widespread discontent with the war and courageous protests against it at home, while Ukraine has relied on the messaging of the telegenic Zelenskyy to encourage Western leaders to support their plight against Russia.
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Managing Editor, News
Leon Wolf is the managing news editor for Blaze News.