The biggest names in the Middle East are headed for the DC Universe as "THE 99" meet the Justice League of America in an upcoming comics miniseries.

Rooted in Islamic history and culture, "THE 99" follows a global group of heroes in search of the lost knowledge of the Dar Al-Hikma library of Baghdad, which has been scattered around the world in gem form (think "Dragon Ball" without the dragon or the wishing).

Though the series is pretty new to North American readers, since its debut in 2006, "THE 99" has been a global hit, spawning its own theme park in Kuwait and an animated series slated to debut next year.

Most, including series creator Dr. Naif Al-Mutawa, attribute the series' success to its vicarious teaching of tolerance. In a letter to his sons, Al-Mutawa explained his vision via the BBC today. "'THE 99' references the 99 attributes of Allah - generosity, mercy, wisdom and dozens of others not used to describe Islam in the media when you were growing up." Al-Mutawa wrote, "But if I am successful, by the time you read this, you will not believe that such an era could have ever existed."

Teaming up with the JLA seems like a pretty smart way to introduce the massive team to western readers accustomed to costumed heroes, especially considering the writing chores have been assigned to Fabian Nicieza, who in addition to a long history with the X-Men has previously penned "THE 99." An artist hasn't been named yet, but DC is scheduled to make an announcement at San Diego Comic-Con International.

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