Elon Musk Challenges Vladimir Putin To 'Single Combat' With Ukraine As The Stakes

Elon Musk
Flickr | Daniel Oberhaus

Billionaire Elon Musk continues to show his support for Ukraine while calling out Russia for invading its sovereign neighbor.

In addition to supplying Ukraine with Starlink satellite internet service, the SpaceX founder got into a war of words with Russia's space agency chief, and now he's taking it a step further, as he mocked Vladimir Putin with a tweet in which he challenged the Russian president to 'single combat.'

It isn't the first time Musk has waded into the Ukraine conflict.

Shortly after Russia invaded Ukraine, Musk responded to a plea from Ukraine's Vice Prime Minister to deliver Starlink satellite units so Ukrainians would have consistent internet service.

Musk came through.

Just a day after the request, Musk shipped a truckload of Starlink receivers into Kyiv, for which Ukrainian officials thanked Musk and SpaceX. Keeping Ukraine connected via satellite is a substantial aid in their time of need.

He's shot back at Russian posturing as well.

A Russian flag
Unsplash | Дмитрий Хрусталев-Григорьев

Musk, whose SpaceX company manufactures and deploys rockets, was uniquely positioned to respond to Russian space chief Dmitry Rogozin.

Rogozin threatened to stop supplying the U.S. with rockets, suggesting the Americans fly on 'broomsticks' instead.

Musk says SpaceX is up to the challenge.

U.S. rocket manufacturing is on the rise, thanks in part to SpaceX, so Musk shot back at Rogozin's comments with a tweet reading, "American Broomstick."

His messaging has been a bit mixed.

Despite his apparent support of Ukraine, Musk also issued a tweet appearing to mock people who support Ukraine. The tweet contained an image that seems to refer to Russia's invasion as 'the current thing.'

Now he's directly challenging Putin.

Less than four hours after the mocking tweet, Musk fired off another tweet — this one taking aim at Vladimir Putin himself. It spells out the Russian president's name in cyrillic.

"Stakes are [Ukraine]," the tweet concludes.

He doubled down?

In another tweet, written entirely in cyrillic, Musk asks, "Do you agree?"

Just to add insult to injury, he addressed the tweet towards the Kremlin's English-language Twitter account.

Putin has yet to respond.

It seems unlikely that Putin would respond to the challenge, let alone take Musk up on it. It also seems unlikely that a ruthless former KGB agent with a nuclear arsenal would lose to a tech billionaire in a fight, but we'll probably never know.

Musk is firmly on Ukraine's side.

Despite indulging some of his edgelord tendencies in mocking supporters of Ukraine, it appears that Musk's heart is in the right place overall. He's made it very clear who he supports in this conflict, and it certainly isn't the Kremlin.

What do you think?

Elon Musk
Wikimedia Commons | NASA/Bill Ingalls

Elon Musk can be a divisive figure, hailed as a visionary by some and criticized as needlessly provocative by others.

But as the Russia's invasion of Ukraine continues, Musk has emerged as an intriguing wild card in the conflict — one who isn't afraid to use his resources to help Kyiv while simultaneously poking the bear.

Let us know what you think of this story in the comments.

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