Tuesday, December 20, 2005

The Scientific Glories Of The Soviet Union

Or, "there's a reason Communism was consigned to the dust bin of history."

Truth is stranger than fiction.

As reported in the Scotsman, Stalin literally tried to create The New Soviet Man:
THE Soviet dictator Josef Stalin ordered the creation of Planet of the Apes-style warriors by crossing humans with apes, according to recently uncovered secret documents.

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."
As you may have noticed, due to the lack of any Communist monkey overlords, that this project failed. But failure carried a high price in the Soviet Union:
Mr Ivanov was now in disgrace. His were not the only experiments going wrong: the plan to collectivise farms ended in the 1932 famine in which at least four million died.

For his expensive failure, he was sentenced to five years' jail, which was later commuted to five years' exile in the Central Asian republic of Kazakhstan in 1931. A year later he died, reportedly after falling sick while standing on a freezing railway platform.
History is silent as to whether his illness was due to acute lead poisoning, a common illness in Stalinist Russia.

A lot of men and women died because they could not bend science to the will of the State. "I canna change the laws of physics!" carried no truck in the age of Stalin.

The time has come to read Robert Conquest, I think. He was one of the view who saw the monster for what it was, and still does today. (Jay Nordlinger wrote about him back in December 2002, and this last November Conquest was awarded the Medal of Freedom. Especially, make sure to read the 24th paragraph.)

(Crossposted to The Wasatch Front.)

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