Elon Musk, Tesla’s chief executive, waded into geopolitical waters on Monday with his own proposal for a peace deal to end Russia’s war in Ukraine, prompting a swift and dismissive response from President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine.
Mr. Musk, the entrepreneur and divisive Twitter personality who is currently embroiled in a legal battle to undo his $44 billion acquisition of the app, regularly shares provocative opinions and jokes online. His own employees have called these “a frequent source of distraction and embarrassment.”
And while world leaders have largely refrained from voicing opinions on how Ukraine should fight the war, Mr. Musk, whose musings tend to garner widespread attention on social media, showed no timidity in weighing in.
Mr. Zelensky wasted little time responding with a Twitter survey of his own, mocking Mr. Musk’s. “Which @elonmusk do you like more?” he wrote, accompanied with a poll with two response options: “One who supports Ukraine” and “one who supports Russia.” At this writing, the poll had over one million responses, around 84 percent in support of Ukraine.
Dmitri A. Medvedev, the former president of Russia who now serves as deputy chairman of the country’s Security Council, also responded to Mr. Musk on Twitter, offering his “kudos” to the business mogul in an opaque message.
Since the early days of the war, Mr. Musk has provided support to Ukraine. Beginning in March, he has sent the country 12,000 Starlink internet terminals, which work with satellites orbiting in space to provide online access.