Speed Reads

The Force is With Him

Star Wars legend Mark Hamill lends voice to Ukrainian air raid app

The Force is strong in Ukraine, as Star Wars icon Mark Hamill has lent his voice to an air-raid warning app used throughout the country, The Associated Press reported Tuesday. 

In the app, which is connected to Ukraine's air defense system, Hamill, who first portrayed the legendary Luke Skywalker in 1977's Star Wars: A New Hope, tells people to take shelter. "Don't be careless," Hamill says, adding, "Your overconfidence is your weakness," borrowing a line from Star Wars: Return of the Jedi. 

The app, Air Alert, "warns Ukrainians that Russian missiles, bombs, and deadly exploding drones may be incoming" when sirens go off, AP reported. When the danger passes, Hamill says, "The air alert is over. May the Force be with you."

The 71-year-old Hamill, who has been an outspoken activist for Ukraine since the outbreak of the war, told AP that it's "impossible not to be inspired by how [the Ukrainians have] weathered this storm."

"Here I sit in the comfort of my own home when in Ukraine there are power outages and food shortages and people are really suffering," Hamill added. "It motivates me to do as much as I can."

While this may seem like a minor detail, some Ukrainians appear to be comforted by the voice of the Master Jedi guiding them through the air raids. 

"We could use a little bit of the power that Hamill wishes us," Bohdan Zvonyk, a Star Wars fan who lives in Lviv, Ukraine, told AP. 

Beyond the air raid app, Hamill has also autographed Star Wars posters to help raise funds for Ukraine, the Los Angeles Times reported, and has partnered with the Ukranian government in a campaign to help purchase reconnaissance drones. 

This campaign, United24, has raised $302 million, according to its website — enough money to buy 1,400 drones for the Ukrainian forces.