It's an old story, sure - but since it's an otherwise slow news day for dictator updates, DotW would be remiss if we didn't revisit the story of Soviet dictator Josef Stalin's plan to build an army of super Communist Apemen to attack and overthrow the bourgeois, decadent capitalist West.
The story begins in the early 1920s when Uncle Joe approached famed Soviet animal husbandry expert Ilya Ivanov with a startling proposition:
I want a new invincible human being, insensitive to pain, resistant and indifferent about the quality of food they eat ...Now, some would argue that the bulk of the Soviet Red Army already fit this description, but Stalin was thinking big. The Politburo rubber stamped Stalin's directives for creating bioengineered soldiers, and ordered the Russian Academy Of Sciences to proceed with plans to create a "living war machine". Ivanov, who was not actually a crackpot unlike many of Stalin's pet scientists, pioneered horse breeding with his crude, but successful, artificial insemination techniques. So, Ivanov reasoned, if we can build a stronger, faster horse, we can certainly build a stronger, faster man.
The problem Ivanov faced is that selective breeding for humans is an extremely tricky business. Besides, even Russian soldiers drawn from the peasantry had, from time to time, been known to complain, feel pain, and even mutiny. So Ivanov took a page from Charles Darwin and looked to man's closest primate ancestor - the chimpanzee. Armed with a small fortune provided by the Politburo, Ivanov traveled to West Africa to collect the chimps and transport them back to the Soviet Union. At his hastily constructed breeding facility in Georgia, Ivanov repeatedly tried, and failed, to impregnate the chimps with human sperm samples. Moving on to plan two, peasant girls were "volunteered" for attempted impregnation with chimpanzee sperm.
Naturally, the harder Ivanov tried, the more he failed. When Stalin grew impatient and demanded a progress report, Ivanov knew his time was running out. In desperation, he tried (and failed) to obtain newer (somehow better?) monkeys from a Cuban heiress, but the story leaked to the Western press, and Ivanov became an international laughing stock. The jig was up. Failing Uncle Joe was bad enough without making the Soviet Union look bad, and Ivanov died shortly after his exile to Karaganda.
The moral? No man could make a monkey out of Josef Stalin.