For those who came in late, Musk threatened to switch off his Starlink service to the Ukrainians because they failed to follow his plan to resolve the war by surrendering to the Russians. When it was pointed out that he could not do that, he ordered Starlink to work out ways that his system could not be used to damage his friend, that nice Mr Putin's armies.
Then to make matters worse, Musk started to back a plan which would involve surrendering Taiwan to the Chinese, which was a move based on the receipt of subsidies from the Chinese government and his multibillion dollar financial interest in China. Musk was already warned by the Chinese government not to talk too much about the COVID-19 lab leak theory.
Given the amount of cash that the US military has given to Musk and Starlink, the thought that it might have its military strategy being dictated by Musk apparently never occurred to it. Normally, the Department of Defense would revoke security clearances from its personnel for carrying unreasonable debt and displaying public admiration for American adversaries, but it seems oddly happy to reward Musk’s public endorsement of authoritarian propaganda with more multimillion dollar contracts.
After all, what is to stop Musk’s enterprises from deciding to turn off a ballistic missile detection satellite because he thinks he knows better and it would be far better for the US to surrender to the Chinese or Russians? He could also throttle network traffic to a Navy ship conducting a freedom-of-navigation operation in an area contested by China? Musk has a contract to build satellites for the U.S. Department of Defense what if (at a cruicial moment) he disabled them in an attempt to bring his own brand of "peace" to the situation.
Now it seems that the Pentagon is getting wise to the danger. It is apparently looking into old style military contracts which prevent this sort of thing from happening. These include contracts drafted in the late 1950s which meant that while a company managed its tech, it still had to obey the US military rather than its CEO. It has to do something because it is worried that the Chinese are shooting up Starlink style satellites and it will be out done.
Dickinson answered matter-of-factly: “Yes.”