Stalin’s half-man, half-ape super-warriors

Tuesday, December 20th, 2005

I’m not sure what to say about Stalin’s half-man, half-ape super-warriors:

Moscow archives show that in the mid-1920s Russia’s top animal breeding scientist, Ilya Ivanov, was ordered to turn his skills from horse and animal work to the quest for a super-warrior.

According to Moscow newspapers, Stalin told the scientist: ‘I want a new invincible human being, insensitive to pain, resistant and indifferent about the quality of food they eat.’
Mr Ivanov was highly regarded. He had established his reputation under the Tsar when in 1901 he established the world’s first centre for the artificial insemination of racehorses.

Mr Ivanov’s ideas were music to the ears of Soviet planners and in 1926 he was dispatched to West Africa with $200,000 to conduct his first experiment in impregnating chimpanzees.

Meanwhile, a centre for the experiments was set up in Georgia — Stalin’s birthplace — for the apes to be raised.

Mr Ivanov’s experiments, unsurprisingly from what we now know, were a total failure. He returned to the Soviet Union, only to see experiments in Georgia to use monkey sperm in human volunteers similarly fail.

A final attempt to persuade a Cuban heiress to lend some of her monkeys for further experiments reached American ears, with the New York Times reporting on the story, and she dropped the idea amid the uproar.


  1. Adar says:

    You would have to mate a human with a female gorilla. A chimp crossed with a human the offspring would kill the chimp during birth.

  2. Isegoria says:

    Adar, I’d prefer not to imagine such things, especially not too vividly, but you have reminded me of a story I wish I could forget.

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