Musk now says will continue funding Starlink in Ukraine
Elon Musk reverses his earlier position and says his company will continue to fund Starlink internet in Ukraine.
The world's richest man announced on Saturday that SpaceX will continue to fund Starlink in Ukraine for free, doing a 180 after saying yesterday that he cannot keep funding the project.
"The hell with it," Musk wrote on Twitter, saying that he will continue to fund the internet for the Ukraine government for free.
The hell with it … even though Starlink is still losing money & other companies are getting billions of taxpayer $, we’ll just keep funding Ukraine govt for free— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 15, 2022
Pentagon Deputy Press Secretary Sabrina Singh said on Friday that the US Defense Department began talks with SpaceX after Musk said the company no longer has sufficient funds to continue to service Starlink satellites in Ukraine.
“I can confirm that the department has been in communication with SpaceX regarding Starlink [in Ukraine],” Singh said during a press briefing.
Singh further added that the Pentagon is presently examining alternatives to keep Starlink satellite communication services operational for the Ukrainian armed forces.
Starlink's importance to Ukraine
There are now 20,000 terminals in Ukraine that Starlink sends high-speed internet to from very low orbits. The high-speed internet has been very beneficial for Ukraine, with Musk coming together with the US government to give Kiev access to the service for free - the US paid for the majority of the terminals and Musk waived the usual monthly fees.
Starlink "changed the course of the war to Ukraine’s advantage," said Mykhailo Fedorov, a deputy prime minister.
Starlink is of such importance that Ukraine's train system depends on it, and so does the government, as it uses it to transmit communications, including Zelensky's broadcasts.
Most importantly, Starlink serves as a secure form of communication on the frontline for mobile command posts and drones, among many other things.
Ignore the tweets, "Starlink is our oxygen, you can’t just turn it off. If we tell Musk [to] piss off and take his Starlinks with him, our army would collapse into chaos," a Ukrainian troop argued.