'Poonsters Demand Russians Return Ibis
Fail to See Humor of Ibis Sitting on Spire Of Red University
Harvard and Radcliffe students rose in protest last night against the Lampoon's attempt to take Threski, the Sacred Ibis, away from the Russian people and the University of Moscow.
Over 300 girls from the Annex last night signed a petition demanding "That the Ibis be left with the Russians, to whom it now belongs by right of courtesy." Similar petitions were being circulated in the Yard last night and will be available in the Houses at noon. The petitions will be presented to both the state department and the Lampoon some time tomorrow.
"The spectacle of the Sacred Ibis any where except on the Lampoon tower is not a subject for humour," funnyman John H. Updike stated last night. "The CRIMSON pranksters seems to have forgotten the rights of property. It's deplorable that they've carried collage jokes into the arena of international relations," comic Updike added.
At New York, Semyon Tsarapkin, First Deputy U.S.S.R. Delegate to the U.N., could not be reached for comment, but another member of the delegation told the Associated Press: "I heard about it, but I think it is being taken up with Mr. Vishinsky." Vishinsky heads the Soviet delegation.
Meanwhile, telegrams from all over the country flooded into CRIMSON offices at 14 Plympton St. "You have done much to ease the tensions of the cold war with your straightforward humor," one from Chicago read.
Many have remarked about the curious inability on the part of the Lampoon to picture the touching scene over Red Square. The Ibis, with the graceful arch of its beak thrust into the Moscow snow, would probably overlook the tomb of John Reed, a former Communist Lampoon editor and one of four men to be buried in the Kremlin.
But the Lampoon was in no mood for either nostalgia or humor yesterday. A series of phone calls to Russian headquarters at 680 Park Ave. in New York City succeeded in completely confusing the hapless Russians. According to the Lampoon, however, arrangements have been almost completed for the return of its Ibis. A carload of editors is expected to drive to New York today to take.
Threski from the center table on Tsarapkin's second floor office, where it now rests.
Comment around the University was varied. Some thought it a "great gag." Other refused to believe the stunt had actually happened.
Michael Maccoby and George S. Abrams, CRIMSON president and managing editors, have a series of 16 pictures taken within the Soviet headquarters by photographer John B. Loengard, Monday. Copies of these were loaned to Life Magazine yesterday.
Maccoby and Abrams stated last night: "We are sorry that the supposed funny men of the Lampoon do not realize that humor is a great panacea for the world's ills and a strategic weapon in the present fight against Communism. It is sad, indeed, that such a petty sense of property has caused the Lampoon to crawl sniveling and whining to the state department. It is a move that can only sour the nation's laughter. For the state department to take a hand in returning the bird would be nothing short of appeasement.