Do Arabs believe in aliens?

“Is it Islamically prohibited to believe in aliens?” “Is it scientifically proven?” “Are aliens supposed to look like movie aliens?” All of these popular questions are answered with a clear-cut “no, no, no.” In clearer terms, it is permissible in Islam to believe in the existence of unknown beings. Meanwhile, it has never been validated in astrobiology that there are grey beings that will dominate our wet planet anytime soon.

Presently, all we have as humans are tales and documents that lack factual evidence of any nature. Nonetheless, UFOs are now regaining their popularity with the advent of social media. As wishful thinkers, we are craving for anything to assist our enthusiastic belief that this universe, with its 100 billion known galaxies, has marvelous life forms living outside our blue planet. So will our intuitions be justified?

In 1970, at an oil station in an area called Um Al-Aish in Kuwait, seven Kuwaiti officials accompanied by an American citizen noticed alarms ringing. They then witnessed an unidentified flying object that had the classic form of a flying saucer that was larger than any kind of airplane. In five seconds, it started to shake powerfully, then evacuated the scene with an “out of this world” velocity. The Kuwaitis expressed their experience to local news stations, and one of them published in 1979 a bestseller titled ‘It Happened in Kuwait.’ This UFO sighting was reported by an English newspaper, and it was noticed by the American embassy.

The MUFON UFO journal also covered it, with a stamp on its front page that said “Arabs Report First UFO in Kuwait.” Undoubtedly, it created a buzz that caused mass fascination about “Kuwaiti aliens” around the entire Arabian peninsula. Sadly, the book was lost, and the station was destroyed during the Iraqi invasion in the early 1990s.

In the 1980s, during the Iran-Iraq war, a flying object reached the Kuwaiti skies over Ahmadi. The Kuwaiti military launched defense rockets directly against it. Seventeen male citizens and a policeman reported the shape of the object as an oval triangle that became a fireball minutes after the rockets were launched. A laser beam blasted from it, then the ship completely disappeared. The more fantastical the report was, the stronger the UFO madness spread.

Then the incident of flight KU542 happened. A Kuwaiti airplane pilot – Al-Shamlan of flight KU542 coming from Egypt – reported, prior to landing, a round ball of light that moved to the northwest of Kuwait at a speed slower than his aircraft. Incidentally, the pilot of flight KU708 also reported it on the same day. These events ignited a lot of curiosity in Kuwait. But nothing was more theatrical than cutting the signal of Kuwait’s television station in 1978, when a supposed flying saucer that had the same characteristics of the 1970s UFO landed on the broadcast station. But nobody paid much attention to it until it saw international coverage by popular non-Arabic magazines around the world.

Multiple claims tend to spread every now and then, to refresh public interest. Since science cannot prove or disprove it, we will continue to pardon ourselves to be creatively artistic about UFO sightings, with our comic book like folklores that inspire legitimate seekers. Needless to say, we are now left with the question we all avoid: “When?”
By Jeri Al-Jeri

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