During a budget session in the Diet, or Japan‘s parliament, the country’s Defense Minister Gen Nakatani confirmed that aliens had never penetrated Japanese air space.
The statement was a response to a question by outlandish lawmaker and square-jawed former celebrity wrestler Antonio Inoki.
According to the AFP, Inoki queried whether Japanese fighter jets had ever intercepted extraterrestrial objects and if “studies were going on” to determine their existence.
“When the Air Self Defense Force detects indications of an unidentified flying object that could violate our country’s airspace, it scrambles fighter jets if necessary and makes visual observation,” Nakatani responded earnestly.
“They sometimes find birds or flying objects other than aircraft but I don’t know of a case of finding an unidentified flying object believed to have come over from anywhere other than Earth,” he said.
Inoki, whose signature wrestling move according to the WWE site was the “octopus stretch,” claimed to have once seen a mysterious UFO that sped off beyond the horizon.
As AFP notes, this isn’t the first time officials in Tokyo have addressed the issue of alien invaders. A formal statement in 2007 said the government “has not confirmed the existence of unidentified flying objects believed to have come from anywhere other than Earth.” But Japan’s defense minister at the time said there were “no grounds” to deny outright the existence of alien-manned UFOs.
In 2009, news reports noted that then-Japanese first lady Miyuki Hatoyama claimed to have known Tom Cruise in a previous life. She also revealed in a book that she had been abducted by aliens.
“While my body was asleep, I think my soul rode on a triangular-shaped UFO and went to Venus,” she wrote, according to the Guardian. “It was a very beautiful place, and it was very green.”
In 2011, the Obama administration was also compelled to discuss the question of extraterrestrial life in response to two petitions posted on the White House’s Web site. “The U.S. government has no evidence that any life exists outside our planet, or that an extraterrestrial presence has contacted or engaged any member of the human race ,” wrote Phil Larson of the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy.