On June 23, 1945, of World War II, the United States Army and Marines had finally reached Naha and had secured Kokusai Street that led directly, to the main thoroughfare of the capital. The battle of Okinawa was beginning to abate, and the last fierce remnants of the Japanese Army held out, near the steep and rupellary edges of the rugged hills of Mount Yonaha.
Eventually, the remaining Japanese soldiers were killed or had committed suicide. There were very few prisoners taken, and after a week, I had been summoned by the United States Army to a mysterious location, within that lofty area.
I was an American scientist by the name of Ashton Crawford, who was in Australia at the time of the urgent request. I was cognizant of the area, but I had never been to Okinawa. I had been to Japan and had worked with Japanese scientists, a decade before the war. There I had been collaborating on previous experiments of chemistry and biology, with American and Japanese scientists.
Okinawa had 150 islands in the East China Sea, between Taiwan and mainland Japan. It had a tropical climate, broad beaches and coral reefs. The largest island was 70 miles long and 7 miles wide, south of Japan.
Once I arrived to Okinawa, I was escorted with immediacy to Naha, and from there I was taken to a military compound, nearby Mount Yonaha. I was not provided much details of the reason I was requested, but upon my arrival to the place, I was apprised by a Captain Holden. Apparently, there was classified information, pertaining to unusual and secretive experiments that were performed by Japanese scientists, during the war.
I was chosen for the portentous task of resolving the mystery of these experiments with a meticulous solicitude, due to my ample experience in biology and my collaboration with Japanese scientists. The fact that I was fluent in Japanese was another pertinence applied to my logical selection.
There was a horrid slaughter that took place in the military compound, and deceased Japanese soldiers were everywhere. It was presumed that they were killed by American troops, but it was not clear, if they committed suicide afterwards. I was then within the dark and disheveled corridor that led to a laboratory, where there were evident signs of elaborate experiments that demonstrated, a calculated effort to create something of an abnormal nature.
The question was what abnormality had been attempted or invented, by the Japanese scientists that the United States Army was concerned? The assiduous Japanese had an urgency to develop a secret weapon that was interrupted, by the presence of the American soldiers, according to the documents and files retrieved at the military compound.
After my perusal of the information divulged, I made a startling discovery. The Japanese had been working on a disturbing and determined experimentation with wild baboons. Incredibly, they had been attempting to create a mutant race of baboons. The experiment was called "kamikaze" which was Japanese for suicidal attacks. I was stupified, but fascinated with the information detailed, within the chronicled documentations. Once I had deciphered the contents, I immediately related my interpretation and analysis to Captain Holden.
Naturally, he was very eager to know more, about the definite status and effectiveness of the experiments conducted by the Japanese. I had mentioned to the best of my comprehension that the Japanese had been in the process of creating what appeared to be mutant baboons.
When he asked me to clarify, I stated that the baboons were being created for the purpose of malicious assassins. This declaration of mine required accurate confirmation. We were fortunate to have within the Japanese prisoners seized, two of the scientists, who had been working on this clandestine operation.
One of them was Kanbun Yabu, an Okinawan, and the other one was Japanese, a Tatsuhiro Shimabuku. I spoke to the Japanese scientist first, but he was adamant in his posture of defiance and silence. He was not cooperative, as I questioned him. Therefore, I had attempted to converse with the other scientist, who was a native Okinawan. Perhaps, he was more cooperative and receptive to our offer for immunity, if he complied.
My direct orders were not only to determine the veracity of the documents, but also, to assist in the strict interrogation. I do not know exactly the inducement for Dr. Yabu to have revealed, such private information to the United States Army.
All I was told by them, was that he assented and made an unbelievable disclosure. Dr. Yabu had confessed under duress of being an accomplice to a horrible experiment that had foreseeable consequences. The experiment was more than a mere animalistic conception.
The inconceivable horror that I learned was realistic, but the question that hastened our intrigue was, what happened to the experiment? Did the scientists succeed in creating, a mutant form of a specimen of a wild baboon? The answer to that horrific contingency was yes.
The experiment had been effectuated with total success. I queried about the location or general bearings of the baboons, and Dr. Yabu had informed us that they were in the tunnels under the military compound. However, there was another interesting fact described by the scientist. He had made mention of the nearby forests, where the tunnels led to. The supposed tunnels were long and narrow in construction.
The notion of savage baboons mutated had increased my suspicion that after the interrogation, I began to read more in depth of the documents exposed. I had studied at length the biology of the primates, and was aware that the baboons were the largest of the non-hominoid members of the primate order. These baboons, that were experimented, formed an uncommon conglomeration of olive baboons, Guinea baboons, yellow baboons, hamadryas baboons and the biggest of them all in size, the chacma baboons.
The thought of chasing supernatural primates in the harsh landscape of Mount Yonaha or the Yanbaru Forest with the humidity seemed, an absurd and unthinkable proposition to Captain Holden. He was not ready to waste men chasing after presumed baboons. The evolving ordeal of defeating the Japanese and reaching mainland Japan was a pressing issue. The order from Washington was to continue forward, and Captain Holden was commanded to head to the other islands of Ikishima and Tomari, to defeat the remaining troops of Japanese there.
The entrance to the constructed tunnels was destroyed by explosives, causing the walls to crumble and tumble. Afterwards, only a residual force of American soldiers had remained to supervise the city of Naha, and protect the aircrafts that would be launching daily flights from the island to Japan.
Ten years had elapsed, and it was then 1955. World War II was over, and I had stayed behind to adjuvate the process of the assimilation of the native and Japanese scientists in the participation of the advancement of science, among the two countries. Our projects dealt with the study of biology found in animal and plant life, but soon the experiment of the baboons would resurface and haunt us.
Unknown to me and Dr. Yabu who had been collaborating with me, Dr. Shimabuku the Japanese scientist that worked on the experiments of the baboons previously, had kept the experiment active. He had reopened the dreary tunnels of the military compound, through another passage that led to the secret caves by Mount Yonaha. The absolute terror of the feral and mutant baboons unleashed would terrorize the entire city of Naha and its people.
One day in the spring of 1955, a disturbing report of dead villagers in Kunigami had made news in Naha. In accordance with several witnesses, large and savage monkeys had attacked the peasant villagers unmercifully. The local police of the Prefecture had dismissed the accounts given and attributed the attackers as enraged lemurs or macaques, who had rabies. When I heard of the unfortunate tragedy, my recollection was not, at first, ascribed to the baboon experiment of ten years ago.
Dr. Yabu's reaction to the terrible incident was of a categorical certitude. He had immediately concluded the viable suspicion that Dr. Shimabuku was behind the attack. When I had asked Dr. Yabu to expound his intrinsic assumption, he simply stated that Dr. Shimabuku was involved somehow. After elucidating his opinion on the matter, he was able to convince me of that actual feasibility. In particular, when he referred to the experimental project of the baboons that was performed a decade ago, during the conflict of the war. I had dreaded that daunting actuality and remembered that the army had destroyed the tunnels and refused to address the issue of the baboons.
Unfortunately, Captain Holden had been killed in the battle of Ukishima, and the military compound had been demolished also. There were not much ampliative attachments to infer about the attack on the villagers, except for the affected witnesses who saw what transpired. Dr. Yabu and I had decided to travel to the village that was located in the valley of Mount Yonaha. We were granted full permission by the authorities, after identifying ourselves, as scientists and biologists.
However, I did take notice to the fact that they seemed reluctant to believe that ramageous baboons were the palpable attackers. This was truly unfathomable, since baboons were not known native inhabitants of Okinawa or the area. The real possibility of the attackers being killer baboons had intrigued my sudden curiosity. Once we arrived at the village of Kunigami and saw the gruesome aftermath, there was tangible evidence of a horrendous attack.
The nature of the rampant attack could not be equated to the mere plundering act of wild monkeys of maddening rage. Whoever committed this barbarity on the village possessed tremendous strength and ferocity displayed. This was no result of any lemur or macaque attack. The question that I pondered, was this a lone isolated incident?
Dr. Yabu was extremely insistent that the primitive baboons that were mutated were behind the alarming attack on the village, and that the main culprit to be blamed was Dr. Shimabuku, his fellow assistant in the former primate experiment with the baboons. I could see the serious severity of this quandary in the eyes of Dr. Yabu, and only he knew the truth of what happened ten years ago. I could not oppugn his account and acknowledgement of the events.
He emphasized the unbridled aggression of these unnatural baboons, who were not ordinary primates. If this noticeable concern of Dr. Yabu was accurate, then where exactly were these intrepid mutant baboons? Dr. Yabu had pointed to the forest near Mount Yonaha. The mountain ridge was of limestone in composition and had a very rough surface, as its exterior.
The small villages of Kunigami, Higashi and Ogimi surrounded the mountain. Dr. Yabu had informed the lawful authorities of the abandoned military compound. This facility would allow us to determine with a punctilious efficiency, if the baboons were there or not. We were accompanied to the lorn military compound by the Okinawan Police of Naha, who were skeptical of our far-fetched suspicion and mention of mutant baboons. The officers from the Prefecture of Police were armed with rifles and guns. We were cautious, but the police officers were not that occupied as we were.
We had entered the military compound slowly, and the facility was poorly maintained inside, as it was outside. Judging from this desolate appearance, the place was still abandoned, but Dr. Yabu had the general impression that Dr. Shimabuku had been present at the military compound recently. There was no incontrovertible doubt in him that Dr. Shimabuku had entered the military compound to continue the prior experiment. His presupposition was proven, and he had come to the direful conclusion that Dr. Shimabuku had created a new race of baboons.
The destruction of the tunnels ten years ago after the battle of Okinawa had seemed to kill any of the mutant baboons created. But Dr. Yabu was sanguine that Dr. Shimabuku had perfected the experiment and had created more advanced killers. Upon hearing this disconcerting revelation, I wondered what exactly did that mean and the composition of those mutant baboons. If Dr. Shimabuku was capable of creating this monstrosity or aberration, then the next question was where were the mutant baboons?
When I imposed that question on Dr. Yabu, he was very straightforward in his response. In conformity to the natural instinct of the baboons to establish a habitat, the Yanbaru Forest would be a logical location. The fastidious problem was convincing the local authorities of this theory of ours that was only conjectural. But fortunately for us Dr. Yabu had convinced them with undisclosed documents he had kept with him after the war. The documents had explained every convoluted detail of the Japanese experiment that was once a top secret.
The plain indication of this evidence was further expounded by Dr. Yabu, with his decisive knowledge of the experiments undertaken precedingly. There was a certain eeriness, when we arrived at the Yanbaru Forest that was located near Mount Yonaha that was primarily made of a hardened limestone surface, beneath the submontane area. There was a slight fog that began to encompass the wide circumjacence of the forest, and then increase in mass. This was a premonitory sign of the unforeseeable terror that was awaiting us upon our arrival. An unsettling adrenaline and apprehension had started to affect me, as we approached the entrance to the forest, with our preparation.
There was absolute silence at first, then suddenly, a strepent sound of a primate call was audible. The sound had intensified in magnitude, as we entered and walked through the thick passage of the forest. When we reached the depth of the forest, we saw the horrific image of the remnants of the dead birds and children scattered, across the branches of the trees and ground.
Apparently, the birds and children were slaughtered, but by whom? We were all in credulity with the ghastly sight and there was not one of those birds or children that had survived. In fact many of them had heads dissevered and torsos half consumed. Whatever caused this anomaly of death had to have been a destructive force of nature. The stench of the dead birds and children was profound and permeated, a poignant smell that was incomparable. The police officers who joined us were puzzled and astounded with the awful occurrence, and they were skittish with the surroundings of the forest.
The children seemed to be the victims of the baboon attack on the village of Kunigami. I had never seen such a horrendous sight of carnage, except on the battlefield. The police officers tightly held their rifles, as we looked on with horror. It was obvious that the macaques could not have initiated this slaughter or any other monkeys. The images of the villagers were still fresh in my mind to forget. Although we heard the forcible noise of the primates, we had not spotted any baboon present inside the forest at all.
It was not until we had continued ahead and saw at the edge of the narrow passage an opening that we came face to face, with the guise of the unnatural mutant baboon that was there. I was discomposed with absolute shock and disbelief, as I stared at the voluminous size of the hybrid baboon. However, the trees had shadowed the indefinite animal, and we were forced to improvise to better our vision.
The sound of our footsteps had startled the baboon, into a sudden and hostile reaction. The primate lunged at us, attacking the closest individual that was one of the police officers, who had assisted us on the search. With such swiftness it mauled and killed the officer, before he could shoot a single bullet. The second officer was petrified and was too slow to pull the trigger. In an instant, he was murdered as well. Dr. Yabu screamed at the third police officer to shoot, who had reacted in time, as he shot to death the mutant baboon. It took numerous bullets to finally subdue the determined animal, who resisted the barrage of bullets. Unfortunately, this had complicated the situation.
The bullets that were heard reverberated, in heavy echoes off the trunks of the trees that reached the ears of the other potent baboons that were outside the forest approaching the vicinity. I began to perceive their arrival, as we scurried to the front entrance of the forest to escape and investigate the stirring commotion.
Outside of the forest, we witnessed the army of the mutant baboons, who were approaching, beyond the ridge. The intuitive baboons did not see us, but their excellent olfactory smell had suspected the presence of human beings. We had to react forthwith and hide from the baboons, before we would be discovered afterwards. We were able to conceal our presence from the baboons, all except the remaining police officer, who survived the attack of the baboon from the forest.
He was noticed by one of the baboons and was savagely attacked by them. He died a merciless death at the hands of the baboons. We were fortunate to escape them, but once in the forest, they detected our scent effectively. I could not erase the images of the mutant baboons. They were of prodigious size, and the volume of their calls was extensive. Their thick furs and keen muzzles were noticeable. They varied from one kind to another, but they were equally of the same height and weight, despite their origin. We ran until we reached the edge of the village of Kunigami.
There we took a vehicle back to Naha to inform the local authorities of the terrible incident in the forest, including the death of the three police officers, who were with us at the Yanburu Forest. We as well urged them to evacuate the nearby villages of Higashi, Okimi and Kunigami.
The police were hesitant to believe our version of the story of the mutant baboons, but they acquiesced and sent police officers to those villagers for protection and vigilance. Dr. Yabu and I had agreed to accompany them, since we were witnesses to the incredible occurrence. The villagers at those villages were not evacuated at first. Only those who desired to leave were able to depart, but most of the villagers had confided in the police officers to protect them. This foolish decision would be erroneous and regrettable.
Within an hour of our arrival, the mutant baboons would attack the village of Kunigami once again. They came from beyond the adjacent grassy alpine slopes and hills, like a wild horde precipitously. An obstreperous call was heard resounding from the valley. The villagers knew it was the call of the baboons, and I had sensed the same eerie indication also. The police officers were the only ones, who were confounded with the call. The people of the village who had remained, hastened for immediate refuge.
I noticed that the police officers were confused, with this erratic desperation displayed by the villagers. The mistakable hesitance and confusion in the police officers would have a consequential result. The mutant baboons arrived to the village, as I saw the massive horde advance. They were a terrifying image of utter ghastliness and awe of an inconceivable conception. This was the first time I had witnessed their full onslaught to the degree of sheer terror. They were impigrous and calculative in their measure of the actual strike.
When the police officers fired at the mutant baboons it was too late, the baboons had begun the senseless bloodshed. Their swift agility was impossible to suppress with mere bullets of rifles it appeared. There were simply too many of them, and too few of the police officers. While they shot and killed countless baboons, the insurmountable numbers of them were disproportionate to the number of baboons that attacked the village. This disadvantage was what doomed and defeated the police officers.
Those who survived scurried in their vehicles and left wounded and impacted, by the brutal baboon attack to the Prefecture of Police in Naha. Miraculously Dr. Yabu and I were able to survive as well the monstrous attack. We had taken shelter under one of the houses, by the trees surrounding the village.
I believe that the trees were what concealed our presence from the baboons. I was certain of that possibility, but there was one thing that was of a transpicuous understanding, these baboons were not any ordinary baboons or primates known to scientists. They were not definitely macaques or other monkeys known to exist in Okinawa or Japan. The thought of wild and untamed mutant baboons going on a total rampage, from village to village was a trepidatious horripilation to conceive or fathom.
At the Prefecture of Police we were forced to contemplate every manner feasible to illaqueate or destroy the barbarous animals, before they murdered any more villagers. We had learned afterwards that the mutant baboons had attacked the villages of Higashi and Ogimi, with the exact ferocity. It would take more than a studious observation to attempt to comprehend and annihilate the mutant baboons.
In order to achieve that, we had to understand their complex nature and hostility. These baboons were dauntless and terrestrial. I was uncertain if they were territorial and herbivorous as normal baboons were, but I knew that their behavior exceeded the typical fury seen with natural baboons. They were seemingly commiscible, and this had to do with the indisputable fact that they were created and bred, from different cell structures of the baboon family. Their canines were much larger and sharper, and all had developed manes, which was an abnormal thing, since not all baboons had manes. I could not forget their long downward-sloping faces that transfixed with perturbation the villagers.
I could not determine whether among them, there was the dominance of hierarchy imposed. It was extremely significant to obtain the necessary knowledge about these ferocious baboons as soon as possible, since they were a minatory peril to the Okinawans and the foreigners in the island. The horrifying notion of the rapid contagion of rabies was a hydrophobic concern to the people and government officials of the island.
This troubling situation too was of great importance to the United States Army stationed at Okinawa. The police with reluctance did not want the involvement of the Americans in their local affairs, even though this was not implicitly expressed. Notwithstanding, what was tacitly demonstrated by the Okinawa Police was a sense of naivety and feckless obstinacy. Perhaps they were trying to be judicious in their rationality, but I thought it prudent to not be so overtly officious. Instead, I was blunt in my interposition, and I had sought the answers in my cautious importunity.
Mr. Yabu concurred with my position and with immediacy, he had suggested firmly that we apprise the Americans of the lethal mutant baboons. If there was any prestigious scientist of Okinawa, who could be taken seriously, then it was Dr. Yabu. His efficacious efficiency was remarkable and respected by the Ryukyuan people of the island.
While many Okinawans had forsaken their language for Japanese, he had embraced the Uchinaaguchi local tongue. The attacks of the baboons were like kamikaze attacks, relentless and audacious. I was strongly convinced that the baboon attacks were not merely territorial or reckless, but instead they were devised.
That meant they had to use the application of thought, which was illogical and fathomless in the twentieth century. I did not discern if there was the archetypal dominant alpha male among the horde that attacked the village. I had recognized their facial expressions and tact, but their vocalizations were more demonstrative than the usual baboon form of communication. I pondered the idea of whether or not the experiment of the baboons was irrevocable. Dr. Yabu did not have the reply to that fascinating query of mine.
The immanence of that pensive presupposition would have to wait, until we could capture one of the baboons alive. That implied taking a very dangerous risk, but we had no other choice. We had decided to accomplish that task, while the police would attempt to locate the mutant baboons in the Yanbaru Forest. The Greater Naha Area of 1.3 million residents and 320 in the main city had to be defended. The United States Civil Administration of the Ryukyu Islands was informed the following morning of the attacks, as we left the Prefecture of Police to head toward the Yanbaru Forest.
As we traveled to the forest, I thought of the miasma of death that was found in the valley of Mount Yonaha. I felt that the military compound there held the answers to solving the intricate origin of the baboons. My theory was that Dr. Shimabuku had sought to create an army of callous and merciless assassins, but hitherto, this theory was based on speculation and immaterial evidence that could be refuted. There had to be an innate aspect of the baboon’s immoderate behavior that was connective to their inborn nature. My dilemma was the incompatible coincidence of that feasibility. Their sentient awareness and perception were exceptional and acute.
We had evacuated the village. Instead of returning to Mount Yonaha, one of the villagers had informed the police that the baboons were close to the Kongoseki Mountains. There below those broad mountains was the subtropical evergreen forest. When we reached the forest, there was no patent sign of the traditional Okinawan woodpecker or rail present.
Therefore, I had assumed this peculiarity to be an ominous and alarming foreboding. I had heeded the suspicious surroundings and went ahead with attentiveness, as the others did as well. No sign of the baboons, only the sounds of the active insects that were within the habitat. We paused and remained still, as we listened to the loud abrupt call of the mutant baboons. We knew it was them, but where were they in this endless labyrinth of the forest? No one had the absolute certainty to suppose the whereabouts of the baboons.
But then, from the vicinal trees of the forest came forth, an incontinent force of a lethiferous group to attack us. Quickly, the police officers shot at the approaching baboons, and killed several, but there were too many. The baboons overpowered the men, and this intense escape by us commenced. They were effrenate and irrepressible in their violence, as we desperately ran and ran to the village.
Once we arrived at the village, we attempted to get in our automobiles and depart the village at once. However, the killer baboons followed and tried to thwart our exit from the village. They were like an impassable barrier to pass. Somehow, most of us were able to flee and reach Naha. The baboons did not remain behind and followed us to Naha. Immediately, in Naha, the prefect had ordered the evacuation of the city. The local denizens were obfuscated as they heard, through the loud speakers the evacuation of the city.
Within a matter of minutes, the horde of mutant baboons descended from the region of Mount Yonaha and reached the city of Naha. Suddenly, they were everywhere it seemed. In the public market, City Hall, the restaurants, and even in the Shureimon temple, among other places. There was an immutable fear that disrupted the placidity of the city of Naha. Instantly, the baboons attacked and killed many people.
In every corner they fought, with the police officers, and as with the men in the Yanbaru Forest, they were simply overpowered. Soldiers then arrived from the military bases, American and Japanese, but it was too late. The city was in complete destruction and ruin. There were abundant dead bodies of Okinawans and foreigners strewn in the streets of the city of Naha. Those who survived the onslaught of the baboons were lucky. This was due to the fortuitous occurrence of our numbers and the baboon’s celerity.
I began to surmise that their attacks were not selective at all, and one interesting detail, they came and went like the gust of a strong wind. They did not remain, but left the city afterwards retreating to their mountain forest.
There was one thing that was certain, they were an unstoppable force of a killing machine that had frightened the people of Okinawa. It did not take time, before the news had reached the other islands of Okinawa and mainland Japan. The islands of Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku were threatened, as panic emerged consequently. Even the cities of Kagoshima, Okayama, Ishikawa, and Tokyo were on high alert. It had not been since the bombings of World War 11 that mainland Japan did not feel terrorized.
The United States Army was resolute in destroying the mutant baboons. Dr. Yabu and I spoke to the commander in charge, as we related every important detail of the baboons that we knew. I had stressed the need to not only eradicate the baboons at the Yanburu Forest, but also, to destroy the military compound at Mount Yonaha. There was a military installation near the vicinity, approximately 1 mile in distance. The marines were stationed there, and were called on to put an end to the baboon threat.
Thus, we headed toward the Yanburu Forest fully prepared in arms and in manpower, to combat the mutant baboons. Before we headed to the area, we had learned of Dr. Shimabuku’s capture in Fukushima, Japan. He had provided us with sufficient information in how to defeat and kill the mutant baboons.
At the village of Kunigami, we prepared our plan and then proceeded to head to the Yanburu Forest. The mourning sun was still bright in its intensity, and it blinded our vision for the moment. But, we knew that the baboons were lurking about in the forest watching our steps taken. Our anxiety level heightened, and our heart pounded and pounded, as the suspense grew and intensified.
Then, from the trees of the sprawling branches emerged the latent and murderous baboon mutants to attack us. Like a speedy bolt of lightning they struck, as they pierced the flesh of the men instantly, with their long, jagged nails and powerful jaws. Many of the baboons were killed, and many of the soldiers were too.
However, it was not in the end, the bullets of the soldiers that stopped the menace of the mutant baboons, but instead, the very same virus that was injected in them from their inception, rabies!
After the encounter with the mutant baboons in the Yanbaru Forest, the mutant baboons began to die of the prolonged effects of the contagion of rabies. Dr. Shimabuku had designed the creation of the mutant baboons for only a specific period of time. His madness and vengeance on the Americans and Okinawans had caused him to resume the experiment of 1944.
He was found mad and institutionalized, within an insane asylum in Tokyo afterwards. The military compound near Mount Yonaha was demolished and never to be restored again. Any visible trace of the mutant baboons was completely eliminated from the history of Okinawa.
The United States Government did not want the informative documents retrieved at the military compound to be discovered or disclosed to the Okinawan people. It was top secret, and I was forced to comply with that order of not revealing any information on the mutant baboon experiment.
The Prefecture of Police in Okinawa along with the United States Civil Administration attributed the phenomenon with the mutant baboons, as nothing more than primates infected with rabies brought to Okinawa by the Japanese, during the war. Of course, Dr. Yabu and I knew the whole truth!