Elon Musk donates submarine to dislodge boat blocking the Suez Canal; calls pilot a war criminal

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Elon Musk has found himself in hot water again after his efforts to assist in refloating a ship blocking the Suez Canal were rebuffed, leading him to call the pilot of the ship a “bona-fide war criminal” in a tweet. Musk was embroiled in an oddly similar controversy, back in 2018, when he called an English rescue diver a pedophile after he was rebuffed from assisting the rescue of twelve Thai children trapped in a cave. That particular incident resulted in a lawsuit in which Musk was eventually cleared of defamation. 

On March 22nd the cargo ship, Ever Given, buffeted by strong winds, ran around in the Suez Canal, blocking the entire waterway. In the days that followed, many hundreds of container ships travelling between the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean were halted in their tracks, costing the global economy billions of dollars each day. On the back of this unravelling catastrophe one of the world’s foremost philanthropists, Elon Musk, was quick to offer assistance in amending the situation. Just like he did in 2018 Musk offered the Egyptian government use of a mini submarine which he projected could help to dislodge the stubborn ship. 

Musk’s visionary plan had been to wedge the submarine tightly between the banks of the canal and the ship at which point the submarine would be detonated, creating a shockwave to propel the ship back into the water. The submarine, built from parts of a SpaceX Rocket, would then put itself back together after the explosion, earning critical praise and multiple awards. The ship’s crew, though, backed by various lawyers from the shipping company and Egyptian Government, unanimously vetoed the idea. In retort, Musk tweeted that the ship’s captain, Mohammed “Mo” al Saaid, was a “bona-fide war criminal.” 

While most commentators had taken Musk’s tweet as simply a venting of his frustration, and possibly a comment on the gravity of the entire situation, the Tesla founder breathtakingly doubled down in a series of follow up tweets in which he further accused Mr. al Saaid of training child soldiers, committing genocide, and being a pirate. He provided no further evidence for these claims. 

Lawyers for the captain were quick to indicate that they would be taking Musk to court for defamation, claiming that Mr. al Saaid would never take part in genocide and that he was only a soccer trainer for the child soldiers. They did concede, however, that while Mr. al Saaid used to be a pirate he was inspired to retrain as a Captain after watching Tom Hanks’ performance in the movie Captain Phillips. He has since been a very exemplary and admired crewmember, respected particularly for his iconic Tutsi-tooth necklace.

The entire episode seems to have soured relations between Egypt and Musk who, with the final volley in this stunning series of accusations, noted: “All Egyptians are pedo guys. Worshipping a boy Pharoah? Pretty sus imo.”

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