Tue. Oct 3rd, 2023
Elon Musk Biographer Retracts Account of Starlink Crimean Blackout

Walter Isaacson, the author of Elon Musk’s upcoming biography, has clarified a previously published account that suggested SpaceX CEO, Elon Musk, intentionally deactivated Starlink coverage off the Crimean coast. The initial excerpt, published by the Washington Post, claimed that Musk personally took charge of the situation and initiated a blackout for the contested shoreline in the face of a potential Ukrainian attack.

Isaacson has now clarified that the area was not already covered by Starlink, which Musk also confirmed. Musk stated that nothing was deactivated and that the Starlink regions in question were not activated. Despite the clarification, the initial writing had already caused damage, resulting in Musk receiving criticism online for a few days.

Musk took to X, a platform he uses frequently, to address the issue. He posted that the Starlink coverage was not enabled in the regions in question, and SpaceX did not deactivate anything. Isaacson also posted on X to further clarify the matter, stating that the Ukrainians mistakenly believed that coverage was enabled all the way to Crimea, but it was not. They had asked Musk to enable it for their drone sub attack on the Russian fleet, but Musk did not comply.

Isaacson acknowledged his misinterpretation of Musk’s decision, stating that he thought Musk had made the decision in that moment, but he was actually following a previously implemented policy. Isaacson posted a correction to address his mistake.

The retraction and clarification from Isaacson have been appreciated by Musk, who reposted Isaacson’s clarification with gratitude.

Overall, it is important to note that the initial account of the Starlink Crimean blackout has been retracted, and it has been clarified that the blackout did not occur as previously stated.