Dusseldorf Tesla-Boss Elon Musk has on Twitter a proposed solution for a possible end to the Russian war of aggression in the Ukraine put to the vote – and thus made waves. Ukrainian President Volodimr Zelenskiy reacted with sharp criticism, as did Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda.
The Ukrainian Ambassador Andriy Melnyk, who is leaving Berlin, became particularly abusive: “The only result is that no Ukrainian ever damned your Tesla-Crap will buy,” Melnyk replied to the Tesla boss on Twitter. And shortly afterwards added: “Fuck you is my diplomatic answer to you.”
Musk proposed on Monday elections monitored by the United Nations (UN) in the four occupied regions in southern and eastern Ukraine – Kherson, Donetsk, Luhansk and Zaporizhia – which the government in Moscow wants to annex after so-called referendums last week. “Russia goes, if that is the will of the people”, Musk wrote on the short message service on Monday.
Crimea, 2014 by Russia According to Musk, what was conquered should formally belong to Russia, the water supply there should be secured and Ukraine should remain neutral. He asked Twitter users to vote “yes” or “no” on his proposal.
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky immediately responded with his own poll on the social media platform. “Which Elon Musk do you like more?” he tweeted, offering two answers: “One that supports Ukraine” or “One that supports Russia.”
Lithuania’s President Nauseda also spoke out in the Twitter dispute. “Dear Elon Musk, if someone tries to steal the wheels of your Tesla, that doesn’t make them the rightful owner of the car or the wheels. Even if they claim they voted for the plan. Just saying,” he wrote on his official profile.
Musk followed up his first tweet with another poll. “Let’s try it this way: the will of the people living in Donbass and Crimea should decide whether they are part of Russia or Ukraine.”
He doesn’t care if his proposal is unpopular. But he cares that “millions of people could die needlessly for an essentially identical outcome.”
Russia has more than three times the population of Ukraine, making Ukraine’s victory in an all-out war unlikely. “If you care about the people of Ukraine, you should seek peace.”