From China-Taiwan to Ukraine, Elon Musk is doling out peace plans — and upsetting everyone

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Elon Musk.
REUTERS/Adrees Latif
  • Officials are pushing back on Elon Musk’s proposed solutions to China-Taiwan tensions and the Ukraine war
  • In a recent interview, he suggested making Taiwan a special administrative zone, similar to Hong Kong. 
  • Neither Taiwanese nor Chinese officials appeared pleased by the billionaire’s advice. 

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has weighed in on some of the world’s most complex geopolitical and military conflicts this week, from China-Taiwan tensions to the war in Ukraine

But the unsolicited advice has earned the billionaire pushback from nearly everyone involved.

In an interview with the Financial Times published Friday, Musk said the conflict between Taiwan and China could be resolved by making the island a “special administrative zone” similar to Hong Kong, noting that such an arrangement “probably won’t make everyone happy.”

The statement quickly angered Taiwanese officials, with one legislator threatening to boycott Tesla if Musk continues to advocate for the proposal, Taiwan News reported Saturday. Other officials argued that due to Musk’s business interests in China, the tech mogul cannot maintain an objective view on the conflict. 

“It is understandable that Musk must cooperate with [China] in order to do business. But now the world is more concerned about how to ensure Taiwan’s democracy, human rights and freedoms,” Luo Zhizheng, secretary-general of the Legislative Yuan of the Democratic Progressive Party in Taiwan, said, per the outlet. 

The Chinese government also pushed back, calling Musk’s comment “inappropriate,” Taiwan News reported separately on Saturday. A spokesperson for China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said “the Taiwan issue is China’s domestic politics,” adding that the government will “resolutely suppress interference by foreign forces,” according to the state-run outlet CCTV News. 

It’s a less extreme reaction compared to those of Ukrainian officials, who blasted Musk’s plan for peace between Russian and Ukraine. The billionaire tweeted his thoughts on Monday in the form of a poll.

In response, Ukraine’s ambassador to Germany, Andrij Melnyk, tweeted, “F— off is my very diplomatic reply to you.”

On Friday, the world’s richest man said he’s “trying to do the right thing” in regards to the war in Ukraine. Musk’s SpaceX company has delivered 15,000 Starlink kits to Ukraine following Russia’s invasion, a project that Musk says has already cost SpaceX $80 million.

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China, Elon Musk, ukraine