The latest development in the heated feud between Elon Musk and British diver Vernon Unsworth may be surprising to many: It was an apology from Musk.
Late Tuesday night, the Silicon Valley billionaire entrepreneur took to Twitter, writing the apology that many have demanded since he called Unsworth, one of the people responsible for the successful rescue of members of a boys soccer team from a cave in Thailand, a “pedo guy” amid an avalanche of since-deleted tweets. Unsworth has threatened to sue Musk.
In response to a post by another Twitter user, Musk tweeted that his “words were spoken in anger after Mr. Unsworth said several untruths & suggested I engage in a sexual act with the mini-sub, which had been built as an act of kindness & according to specifications from the dive team leader.”
The tweet was referring to a CNN interview with Unsworth that was released Friday. During the interview, the diver railed against Musk and his submarine.
“He can stick his submarine where it hurts,” Unsworth said. “It just had absolutely no chance of working. He had no conception of what the cave passage was like.”
Unsworth was referring to Musk’s offer to use a miniature submarine to rescue the 12 boys and their coach, who were trapped in the flooded cave for two weeks before a team of international divers brought them to safety last week.
In response to Unsworth, Musk unleashed a series of tweets defending his invention and claimed that the diver, who has been praised as a crucial member of the rescue team, did not even participate in saving the boys and their coach.
Musk then tweeted, “Sorry pedo guy, you really did ask for it.”
Unsworth was quick to respond. When asked by a reporter Monday if he planned to take legal action against Musk, Unsworth said, “Yes, it’s not finished.”
Responding to another Twitter post, Musk apologized to Unsworth on Tuesday.
“Nonetheless, his actions against me do not justify my actions against him, and for that I apologize to Mr. Unsworth and to the companies I represent as leader,” he tweeted. Those companies include Tesla, the Boring Co. and SpaceX. “The fault is mine and mine alone.”
Backlash to Musk’s tirade against Unsworth has been fierce. On Monday former Vermont governor Howard Dean tweeted, “If the CEO loses it, the company is not worth anything.”
On Monday, Tesla’s shares dropped 3 percent, The Washington Post’s Drew Harwell reported. Since last month, the company’s stock has gone down more than 16 percent.
Tesla stock rose slightly Tuesday, closing up 0.36 percent to $323.85 a share.
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