We discuss and comment on the role agriculture will play in the containment of the CO2 problem and address protocols for terraforming the planet Earth.
A model farm template is imagined as the central methodology. A broad range of timely science news and other topics of interest are commented on.
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Russian Ape Men
This tale is an insight into the
scientific musings of Josef Stalin who somehow got it into his head that cross
breeding between humans and apes was a viable proposition.Of course he also listened to the ideas of Lysenko
who had an eccentric theory for the development of speciation that consistently
failed to produce results however right or wrong the theory may be.Unfortunately Josef decide that every other
scientist had to accept that same theory with predictable results.I expect great genius was demonstrated in
writing up the results.This process is
familiar to those who have followed the global warming debate.
With this bit of work and knowing
what we know today and what we actually knew in Stalin’s time, the work was
doomed to utter failure.
Anyway this all produced a
history of sorts as did the Nazis in search of the Ark of the Covenant.At least the excesses of global warming
pretty well ended with the scandal of Climategate.
Secret government files generated in Russia in 1926 under the regime of
Premier Josef Stalin reveal the details of an astonishing and shocking story
that eerily parallels the scenario presented in H.G. Wells’ The Island of
Dr. Moreau. According to the formerly classified records, Stalin had a crazed
idea to try and create an army of creatures that would be a combination of
half-ape and half-man, and that would be utterly unbeatable on the battlefield.
As a result Ilya Ivanov, the former Soviet Union’s
top animal-breeding expert at the time, was personally told by Stalin: “I want
a new invincible human being, insensitive to pain, resistant and indifferent
about the quality of food they eat.” Somewhat shrewdly, and perhaps
anticipating a scenario similar to the catastrophic ending in The Island of Dr. Moreau, Stalin added that the
creatures should possess “immense strength but with an underdeveloped brain.”
Certainly, in the eyes of Stalin if anyone could make the crackpot
project succeed it was Ivanov. A highly regarded figure, he had established his
reputation under the Tsar when, in 1901, he established the world’s first
center for the artificial insemination of racehorses. But more important to
Stalin was the fact that Ivanov had already tried to create a “super-horse” by
attempting to crossbreed such animals with zebras.
Despite the fact that the attempts to crossbreed a horse with a zebra
failed completely, Moscow’s Politburo forwarded Stalin’s request to the Academy
of Science with the order to build a “living war machine;” an order that came
at a time when the Soviet Union was embarking upon a crusade to turn the world
upside down, with social engineering seen as a partner to industrialization.
In addition, Soviet authorities were struggling at the time to rebuild
the Red Army after the devastation of the First World War, and there was also
intense pressure to find a new labor force, and particularly one that would not
complain. As a result, in the warped mind of Josef Stalin, the secret creation
of a super race of hybrid creatures that combined the intelligence of human
beings with the physical strength of some of the larger primates, such as
gorillas and chimpanzees, seemed to be the perfect antidote to every problem.
The Russian scientific community swung into action and Ivanov was
quickly dispatched, with $200,000 in his pocket no less, to West
Africa where the first such experiment was planned: namely the
impregnation of a number of chimpanzees with human sperm. Ivanov’s now-archived
reports reveal that the Pasteur Institute in Paris,
France secretly granted him
permission to use their research station in Guinea,
West Africa, for ape-breeding research.
As Ivanov advised the Politburo, however: “The biggest problem is to
catch living females.” As a result, Ivanov’s team learned that the answer to this
tricky problem was to burn the trees and chase the apes into cages as they
scampered down the trunks. Ivanov also reported, somewhat disturbingly, on the
fact that his team had “seized” a number of local African women in the area who
were “to be impregnated with ape sperm.” No pregnancies resulted. More
ambitious plans to impregnate female gorillas with human sperm also ended in
At the same time, a center for such experimentation in Russia was stealthily established in Stalin’s
birthplace of Georgia,
where the super-apes were to be raised if impregnation was ever seen to be
successful. Unsurprisingly, none of the West African experiments succeeded.
Undaunted, however, Stalin pressed on with an even more controversial plan: he
arranged for a number of women “volunteers” in Russia to be impregnated with
monkey sperm in an effort to determine whether or not following this particular
route would prove to be more successful. Again, it was not.
That such experimentation did proceed, however, is not in doubt: only
recently, workmen engaged in the building of a children’s playground in the
Georgian Black Sea town of Suchumi
found a plethora of ape-skeletons, and an old abandoned laboratory.
In the eyes of the ruthless Stalin, and a result of the resounding
failure to create an army of man-beasts, Ivanov was now in complete disgrace.
As a result, Stalin sentenced Ivanov to five years in jail, which was later
commuted to five years’ exile in the Central Asian republic of Kazakhstan
in 1931. He died a year later, after falling sick while standing on a freezing
Nick Redfern is the author of many books, including Final Events, The
Nasa Conspiracies, and the forthcoming The Real Men in Black.