An experiment with rats was started with a view to find out whether rats may leave the human civilization behind
I feel that I am obliged to write this letter as I am really anxious about the future of mankind. I would like to tell some facts that I had learnt in a secret laboratory long ago. When I studied at the physics department of the university, like thousands of other students I was offered to work in a secret laboratory upon graduation. I started working in the laboratory in 1982. When I came to the laboratory together with other University graduates for the first time, we were lectured about the history of the laboratory.
The laboratory appeared in Saratov in 1913. Unknown biology teacher, Vasily Brisyuk decided to develop the Darwin Theory and write a story how a man evolved from apes. The lectures on the laboratory's history said that the teacher had had source facts and evidence to prove that man had evolved from apes. I would have asked for more details if I could foresee the result of the whole story.
The Theory said that when vast territories were flooded within a long period of time, trees disappeared on the planet. The flooding was very slow, and apes had to live in water after they descended from trees; they were half-submerged in water. This happened in the place where Oceania is situated nowadays. The apes gradually migrated to Asia and Australia; at that, they always had to stay in water. As a result of the permanent staying in water, some body organs atrophied (hair, tail and other parts disappeared), other organs developed instead (feet, for example).
What is more, some hair still remained on the heads of the apes for protection from insects. Females had long hair that served protection from insects for them and their babies. Male apes had haired chests and beards for better protection from insects while they were sleeping on shallow places of flooded areas.
Development of different body organs depended upon how quickly apes reached the continent. This explains the origin of different kinds of people and probably even the origin of shellfishes. Evidence proving the stages of apes turning into humans is buried on the ocean bottom. The lecturer mentioned lots of evidence together with complicated biological terms which I could hardly remember. I would like to tell an abridged version of the story that I had heard in 1982.
But for Vadim Naimam who came across the theory in 1929, the theory itself and its author might have been forgotten because of WWI and the civil war in this country. The man decided to verify the theory in practice. However, as it was quite a log way for apes to evolve into humans, it was decided to perform the experiment with rats. Evolution waves of rats interchange quicker than those of humans. One hundred years of human life equals to one year of a rat's life. The experiment was launched with a view not only to prove the theory of human origin; it was rather connected with development of the rat civilization. The rat civilization was expected to overtake the human one and help design new appliances and materials.
It is still a mystery how Naiman managed to persuade the government to finance the experiment. Even during WWII, when experiments with rats seemed to be of no importance at all, the secret laboratory was transferred to the Ural region. Prominent scientist Nikolay Timofeyev-Resovsky actively participated in the experiments of the laboratory.
I worked as a physician in the laboratory together with other University graduates. We had to maintain the originally set conditions in the boxes where the experiment was held. Some of the boxes were under effect of radiation; we also had to maintain the level of radiation there. We designed different kinds of test and training devices. I even hoped to participate in expeditions going to the places of mankind origin with research ships. The expeditions were held several times and obtained lots of evidence proving the theory of human origin.
It was said in the lectures that investigation of the subject faced several problems at the beginning. The first problem was that the teeth of rats were better developed than hands of a man. It meant that new instruments and tools of labor might appear in the network of the experiment. Those instruments would be adapted to organization of rats. And such instruments actually appeared. The second problem was that rats were always sitting in one place while the mankind was constantly moving. The rats made a pile of everything they could find in their boxes and lived on the pile. There were lots of other problems we faced during the experiment.
It was admitted that the developing mankind made some kind of an island from the stuff on the ocean bottom to bury their leaders so that fishes and other animals couldn't eat the body. The rats also evolved through this stage in their development.
Biologists, sociologists and other specialists didn't let the rats' development run uncontrolled. In the network of the experiment, lots of test, training and other devices were created. Researchers defended their dissertations on the basis of the experiment. My opinion at that time was that if the rats didn't follow the path of human development, the civilization of rats might have followed a path different from technocratisation of the society. But this opinion of a young specialist was ignored at that time.
It the years of perestroika, the government appropriated no finance for the experiment. It was ordered to close the laboratory and liquidate the experimental material. Probably, the authorities considered the project as having no prospects.
When the experimental materials were liquidated, Professor Friedman asked me and three colleagues of mine to help him investigate the passages that the experimental rats had made to escape from the laboratory. It was not clear yet whether they escaped because of the liquidation of the laboratory, or the animals just made a decision to escape without any visible reason. If the last suggestion was right, why did the rats escaped from three boxes at once? If they escaped because the laboratory was to be liquidated, how did they learn about it? We saw the passages the rats had made to escape and understood that with those instruments of labor that they had, the rats wouldn't be able to dig out such passages within a couple of days! We had to estimate what were the tools used for making the passages in walls made of concrete and splinters of glass. It was really astonishing but the rats even concealed the holes of the passages. The passages led to the forest. When dogs were ordered to sniff the rats' traces, they disobeyed. Two of the three experimental boxes from which the rats escaped had conditions similar to changes of the seasons. It was believed that such conditions would help the animals develop quicker.
It is not clear whether the escaped rats were further searched for or not. Probably, directors of the laboratory decided that the rats would die out outside the laboratory, or something else. Me and my colleagues had to sign a non-disclosure undertaking and were dismissed. But now I fear the some of the rats have survived; probably a rat civilization is developing side by side with the human civilization.