Elon Musk apologized Wednesday for calling the British diver Vernon Unsworth who assisted in the Thai cave rescue a “pedo.”
The comment came after Unsworth called a submarine that Musk’s team was developing to assist in the rescue “just a PR stunt” in a CNN video.
“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,” Musk tweeted Wednesday. “The fault is mine and mine alone.” (RELATED: Brooklyn Girl Who Says Another Middle Schooler Raped Her Sues After School Counselor Tells Her ‘Move On’)
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. The fault is mine and mine alone.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 18, 2018
Unsworth had also suggested that Musk “stick his submarine where it hurts” in the video interview.
A team of international divers worked to rescue 12 Thai boys and their soccer coach from the flooded cave. The last of the group was extracted on July 10 after becoming trapped on June 23.
Musk became involved on July 4 after a Twitter user tweeted at him on July 3 and said, “Hi sir, if possible can you assist in any way to get the 12 Thailand boys and their coach out of the cave.”
I suspect that the Thai govt has this under control, but I’m happy to help if there is a way to do so
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 4, 2018
He tweeted on July 6 that he was sending engineers from his companies SpaceX and The Boring Co. to assist in the rescue in any way that they could.
Musk engaged in a long Twitter thread throwing around ideas for rescue technology with aerospace engineer James Yenbamroong, who was already connected with the rescue efforts, on July 5 and 6.
Musk’s contraptions were not used in the rescue efforts, but he congratulated the trapped kids and rescue team on July 7 for “bravery, resilience & [sic] tenacity” before the rescue was completed.
Then the tweets began to get heated. Unsworth, who lives in the Thai city Chiang Rai near the cave, had explored the cave system before and was quoted about rescue operations by CNN on June 26. Unsworth was quoted taking a swipe at Musk’s involvement at least two weeks later, and the CEO took to Twitter to respond.
“Never saw this British expat guy who lives in Thailand (sus) at any point when we were in the caves,” Musk wrote in a now-deleted tweet on Sunday. “We will make [a video] of the mini-sub/pod going all the way to Cave 5 no problemo. Sorry pedo guy, you really did ask for it.”
Unsworth considered taking legal action against Musk. Chiang Rai has a reputation for being a hub for child sex trafficking.
“As this well-written article suggests, my words were spoken in anger after Mr. Unsworth said several untruths & [sic] suggested I engage in a sexual act with the mini-sub, which had been built as an act of kindness & [sic] according to specifications from the dive team leader,” Musk wrote on Twitter on Wednesday.
As this well-written article suggests, my 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.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) July 18, 2018
Musk replied to that tweet with his final apology tweet.
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