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Why Elon Musk’s Starlink Has Little Effect On Iranian Demonstrations

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Elon Musk

Elon Musk

In a few short remarks on Twitter, billionaire Elon Musk sparked headlines last week, as he regularly does. This time, he was alluding to the ongoing protests in Iran. He was promising to let Iranians impacted by state-imposed internet restrictions utilize SpaceX’s satellite internet network. And the US government said it will back him up by relaxing sanctions on Iran, supporting unrestricted internet access, and giving the necessary licenses to make the process work.

While sending the internet to Iran via satellite is not impossible, a number of major problems make it exceedingly unlikely, at least in the medium future. So far, there have been ten nights of protests, which began after Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Kurdish woman, died in the hands of Iran’s morality police after being detained for allegedly violating the country’s traditional Muslim dress code. Official figures have not been disclosed, but protests have been reported in a majority of Iran’s 31 provinces, with scores of people murdered and thousands imprisoned.

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