“SpaceX reprioritized to cyber defense & overcoming signal jamming,” Musk tweeted, adding, “Will cause slight delays in Starship & Starlink V2.”
“@elonmusk, while you try to colonize Mars — Russia try to occupy Ukraine! While your rockets successfully land from space — Russian rockets attack Ukrainian civil people! We ask you to provide Ukraine with Starlink stations and to address sane Russians to stand,” Fedorov had written on social media.
SpaceX responded quickly to Fedorov’s appeal and activated Starlink satellites in Ukraine. Subsequently, Musk tweeted a warning, saying, “Important warning: Starlink is the only non-Russian communications system still working in some parts of Ukraine, so probability of being targeted is high. Please use with caution.”
Since Fedorov’s appeal, Musk has also been supportive of ordinary Ukrainians and Russians on social media.
“Hold strong Ukraine. And also my sympathies to the great people of Russia, who do not want this,” wrote Musk on March 4.
As the situation in Ukraine continued to worsen and the West imposed sweeping sanctions on Russia and blocked Russian media, Musk voiced his objection to the move, saying, “Starlink has been told by some governments (not Ukraine) to block Russian news sources. We will not do so unless at gunpoint.”
“Sorry to be a free speech absolutist,” Musk added.
That being said, an full-scale information war appears to be taking place alongside the military conflict in Ukraine. While Russia has mobilized its propaganda machine to demoralise Ukrainian troops, the West has responded by banning Russia media outlets. Ukrianians, meanwhile, are making use of social media to share ground realities with the rest of the world.
Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine began on February 24, hundreds of soldiers and civilians have been killed, and a ceasefire appears to be nowhere in sight.