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Elon Musk tweets ‘peace plan’ for Russia-Ukraine war. Chaos ensues.

Elon Musk, as he often does, fired off some tweets on Monday. This time, he took aim at the Russia-Ukraine war — asking via a Twitter poll if his followers approved of a four-point peace plan to end the conflict.

The internet was not impressed.

Musk’s proposal set off a firestorm online, drawing in Ukrainian diplomats, Russian officials, fans of the billionaire entrepreneur and even a couple of presidents. It came the same day as Russia’s parliament voted to formalize Moscow’s illegal annexation of four regions of Ukraine, following staged referendums in the territories last week.

Musk’s plan began with this suggestion: “Redo elections of annexed regions under UN supervision. Russia leaves if that is [the] will of the people.”

His second point? “Crimea formally part of Russia, as it has been since 1783 (until Khrushchev’s mistake).”

Here, Musk was repeating a selective version of the history of the Crimean Peninsula, one that closely aligns with the Kremlin’s. He didn’t, of course, acknowledge the 1994 Budapest Memorandum, in which Russia agreed to respect Ukraine’s territorial integrity, including Crimea. Moscow annexed Crimea in 2014.

His final two points called for Ukraine to remain “neutral” and for the water supply to Crimea to be “assured.”

“This is highly likely to be the outcome in the end — just a question of how many die before then,” Musk said of his plan.

At 5 p.m. Eastern time, more than 1.6 million votes were cast in the Twitter poll, with 63.2 percent voting “no” and 36.8 percent voting “yes.”

There were some notable responses.

The official Twitter account of Ukraine’s parliament responded, simply, “No.” The Ukrainian ambassador to Germany, Andrij Melnyk, has some choice words for Musk.

“F— off is my very diplomatic reply to you @elonmusk,” he said.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky put up a Twitter poll of his own: Which @elonmusk do you like more?” There were two possible answers: “One who supports Ukraine” and “One who supports Russia.” At 5 p.m., the former one was winning.

But even amid the harsh response, Musk doubled down.

“Let’s try this then: the will of the people who live in the Donbas & Crimea should decide whether they’re part of Russia or Ukraine,” he tweeted with a “yes” or “no” poll.

To this, Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda fired back: “Dear @elonmusk, when someone tries to steal the wheels of your Tesla, it doesn’t make them [the] legal owner of the car or of the wheels. Even though they claim both voted in favor of it. Just saying.”

The official Twitter account of the Ukrainian news outlet, Kyiv Post, wrote of Musk’s original proposal: “We don’t carry out votes on apartheid and Nelson Mandela.”

Then the pro-Kremlin RT news channel reposted Musk’s peace plan, with the comment “Elon Musk proposes a solution to the conflict in Ukraine.”

Kyiv Post, pointing to the propaganda network’s tweet, wrote: “It’s a bad sign, Elon.”

Musk has played an interesting role in Ukraine’s war against Russia — in a characteristically unconventional way. Soon after Russia’s invasion, Musk announced that Starlink satellite internet terminals — which help people access the internet via satellite — were being sent to Ukraine. He also challenged Putin to a one-on-one fight. Musk did not respond to a request for comment.

Later on Monday, the chairman of the Ukrainian parliament, Ruslan Stefanchuk, proposed his own plan on Telegram:

“Russia withdraws from Ukraine and stops killing Ukrainian civilians.

Moscow is sold to China and disappears from the face of Earth as it has been since 1147 (until Yuri Dolgorukiy’s mistake)

Russia pays reparations to Ukraine for everything it has done

Ukraine is a member of NATO. ”

Ryan reported from Kyiv, Ukraine. Robyn Dixon in Riga, Latvia, contributed to this report.

War in Ukraine: What you need to know

The latest: Russian President Vladimir Putin signed decrees Friday to annex four occupied regions of Ukraine, following staged referendums that were widely denounced as illegal. Follow our live updates here.

The response: The Biden administration on Friday announced a new round of sanctions on Russia, in response to the annexations, targeting government officials and family members, Russian and Belarusian military officials and defense procurement networks. President Volodymyr Zelensky also said Friday that Ukraine is applying for “accelerated ascension” into NATO, in an apparent answer to the annexations.

In Russia: Putin declared a military mobilization on Sept. 21 to call up as many as 300,000 reservists in a dramatic bid to reverse setbacks in his war on Ukraine. The announcement led to an exodus of more than 180,000 people, mostly men who were subject to service, and renewed protests and other acts of defiance against the war.

The fight: Ukraine mounted a successful counteroffensive that forced a major Russian retreat in the northeastern Kharkiv region in early September, as troops fled cities and villages they had occupied since the early days of the war and abandoned large amounts of military equipment.

Photos: Washington Post photographers have been on the ground from the beginning of the war — here’s some of their most powerful work.

How you can help: Here are ways those in the U.S. can support the Ukrainian people as well as what people around the world have been donating.

Read our full coverage of the Russia-Ukraine war. Are you on Telegram? Subscribe to our channel for updates and exclusive video.

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