Israel threatens to destroy Starlink

Israeli Communications Minister Shlomo Kahri has vowed that Tel Aviv will use "all means at its disposal to fight” SpaceX CEO Elon Musk’s planned provision of Starlink internet access to the Gaza Strip.

“Hamas will use it for terrorist activities,” Kahri claimed in a post on X (formerly Twitter), adding that “there is no doubt about it, we know it, and Musk knows it.”

In response, the tech billionaire said he is “not so naive,” explaining how the proposed scheme would work, while promising to “do a security check with both the US and Israeli governments before turning on even a single terminal.”

“Per my post, no Starlink terminal has attempted to connect from Gaza. If one does, we will take extraordinary measures to confirm that it is used *only* for purely humanitarian reasons,” Musk added.

Earlier on Saturday, Musk stated that he would open the Starlink satellite network to “internationally recognized aid organizations” working in Gaza, after a wave of Israeli airstrikes severed the enclave’s last phone and internet connections with the outside world.

Internet and cell phone services stopped working in Gaza on Friday night after a wave of Israeli airstrikes. The outage left news organizations and aid groups unable to reach their workers, with the UN children’s agency (UNICEF), the World Health Organization, Doctors Without Borders, Red Cross, and Red Crescent all reporting no contact from their employees. RT Arabic was also temporarily unable to contact its correspondents and photographers in Gaza.

Musk’s plan would mark the second time that he has deployed Starlink to a combat zone. Shortly after the start of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine, the tech tycoon supplied Kiev with Starlink terminals. However, he fell out of favor when he barred the Ukrainian military from using the network to guide drone strikes on Russian ships in the Black Sea.

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