Starlink in Gaza: Elon Musk’s masterstroke amidst the controversy.
After facing accusations of antisemitism, Elon Musk took a noteworthy step on November 27th by joining Prime Minister Netanyahu on a significant visit to the Kfar Aza kibbutz. This location had been attacked by Hamas on October 7th. Musk and Netanyahu, as reported by the Haaretz newspaper, actively engaged by listening to testimonies about the tragic events and visiting the Liebstein family’s house.
Elon Musk’s visit was marked by a proactive engagement with the local community, wherein he sought and received detailed information from Yossi Keren, the head of the Shaar Hanegev regional council, and an army spokesperson. Musk’s personal commitment to comprehending the situation and empathizing with the affected community was unmistakable. He emphasized a genuine desire to fully understand the challenges they are confronting, showcasing a hands-on approach and a sincere interest in contributing positively to the community’s well-being.
Regarding the accusations of antisemitism, X by Elon Musk could suffer significant losses. According to the New York Times, the company could lose up to $75 million in advertising revenue after a controversial tweet in which the entrepreneur endorsed an antisemitic conspiracy theory. Internal company documents from the last quarter indicate that over 100 brands and advertisers have paused advertising on X, while others are considering doing so. Major brands such as IBM, Apple, and Disney quickly withdrew their ads from X following the incident, according to the Media Matters report, a media monitoring organization in the United States. Airbnb blocked over $1 million in advertising on X, while Uber and Coca-Cola are two other brands that suspended advertising on the platform.
A relevant aspect of Musk’s activity related to Israel is the agreement with the Israeli Ministry of Communications regarding access to Starlink, Elon Musk’s satellite internet connection network. The agreement stipulates that access to Starlink from Gaza will only be possible with Israel’s consent. Communications Minister Shlomo Karhi announced the agreement on X, congratulating Musk for reaching a preliminary agreement with the ministry under his leadership. Karhi’s statement emphasizes the importance of Israeli approval for the use of Starlink satellite units, including in the Gaza Strip.
The recent visit of Elon Musk and Prime Minister Netanyahu to the Kfar Aza kibbutz, coupled with their agreement on Starlink, serves as a powerful testament to the commitment and collaboration between Musk and Israel. Going beyond the controversies surrounding Musk, these events signify a deliberate effort to construct bridges and confront challenges hand in hand with Israeli authorities, ultimately bolstering the bilateral relationship. The initiatives underscore Musk’s dedication to actively engage with Israel, fostering cooperation and addressing shared concerns for mutual benefit.