In early October, Elon Musk was roundly criticized after tweeting out a peace plan to end the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Notably, the plan involved ceding Crimea to Russia, which earned Musk a blunt rebuke from a Ukrainian ambassador. “F*ck off is my very diplomatic reply to you,” Andrij Melnyk tweeted at the Tesla CEO. In essence, Musk’s proposed plan was a little too conciliatory to Russia, who could very easily end the war by calling off the invasion.
According to a new report, there’s a reason why Musk was a little too differential to Russia. He had spoken to Vladimir Putin before writing his now maligned peace plan. Even more noteworthy, Musk appears to have proposed virtually everything that Putin wanted during their conversation, which is obviously not great. Via Vice:
In a mailout sent to Eurasia Group subscribers, Ian Bremmer wrote that Tesla CEO Musk told him that Putin was “prepared to negotiate,” but only if Crimea remained Russian, if Ukraine accepted a form of permanent neutrality, and Ukraine recognised Russia’s annexation of Luhansk, Donetsk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia.
According to Bremmer, Musk said Putin told him these goals would be accomplished “no matter what,” including the potential of a nuclear strike if Ukraine invaded Crimea, which Russia annexed in 2014. Bremmer wrote that Musk told him that “everything needed to be done to avoid that outcome.”
Here is Musk’s peace plan, which again, matched closely to Putin’s wishes:
– Redo elections of annexed regions under UN supervision. Russia leaves if that is will of the people.
– Crimea formally part of Russia, as it has been since 1783 (until Khrushchev’s mistake).
– Water supply to Crimea assured.
– Ukraine remains neutral.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 3, 2022
What’s concerning is not only Musk’s massive reach on Twitter, which he’s now used to push Putin talking points, but a day after the Tesla CEO was mocked for his peace plan, he restarted his purchase of Twitter after spending all summer trying to back out of the deal. Pundits pointed out the coincidental timing, and there were theories floating around that Musk was receiving cash from Russian sources. However, that deal has yet to be completed, and the likelihood of Musk completing the purchase is once again in flux.
Regardless of what happens with Twitter, Musk pushing a peace plan that benefits Putin is concerning in and of itself.