Elon Musk lashed out at a British diver who was the main character in the rescue of the 12 Thai soccer players and their coach from a cave last week. Musk called the professional diver a ‘pedo’ in a tweet, which was later deleted. Musk attacked the diver in his tweet after the British diver, Vern Unsworth, criticized Musk’s submarine design saying that he can “stick his submarine where it hurts.” Musk offered to help the rescue effort by delivering a ‘kid-sized’ submarine for use by the rescue team in the cave.
In an interview after the successful rescue of all players, Unsworth said the submarine “had absolutely no chance of working” because the inventor “had no conception of what the cave passage was like”. Musk defended his submarine in a series of tweets and finally said, “Sorry pedo guy, you really did ask for it.” Musk faced criticism for this attack, but he followed up describing his visit to Thailand saying, “Never saw this British expat guy who lives in Thailand (sus) at any point when we were in the caves. Only people in sight were the Thai navy/army guys, who were great. Thai navy seals escorted us in – the total opposite of wanting us to leave. The water level was actually very low & still (not flowing) – you could literally have swum to Cave 5 with no gear, which is obv how the kids got in. If not true, then I challenge this dude to show final rescue video”.
Unsworth was shocked by the allegations that Musk put on him. He said that he was “astonished and very angry” at the attack. He said that he has saved copies of the tweet and is considering to take legal action against Elon Musk. Not only Unsworth was shocked by Elon Musk’s tweets. James Anderson, Tesla’s fourth-largest shareholder, said that he was disappointed in Musk’s behavior saying, “I intend to convey my – predictable I trust – feelings to the company tomorrow.”
Musk got involved in the rescue after someone tweeted at him asking if he could provide some assistance. He said that he was sure that the Thai government had everything under control but would offer to help if he could. He later went into overdrive to finish the production of a tiny submarine which he thought will be useful in the recovery of the soccer team. When the production was completed, he flew to Thailand to deliver the sub. According to Unsworth, Musk was asked to leave very quickly, and the submarine wasn’t used in the rescue efforts.
Musk has promised to produce a video to demonstrate the submarine’s capabilities. Some people think that Musk’s involvement in the Thailand rescue might be an act of self-promotion. Last week, Musk also said that he would help to solve the water crisis in Flint, Michigan after being approached by a resident on Twitter. He also said that he can help by offering to install water filters at any house which is still experiencing water quality issues.