Daily Israel Report

Helen Thomas Dies, Aged 92

The veteran journalist who ended her career with an anti-Semitic tirade died at 92
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 7/20/2013, 9:10 PM

Helen Thomas
Helen Thomas
Reuters

Helen Thomas, the veteran White House journalist who ended her career with an anti-Semitic tirade, died on Saturday at the age of 92.

Thomas was the first woman to join the White House Correspondents' Association, and the first woman to serve as its president. She was also the first female member of the Gridiron Club, Washington's historic press group.

Politico.com wrote that she served for 57 years at United Press International, first as a correspondent then as a White House bureau chief, before becoming a columnist for Hearst Papers.

Thomas was present at the press briefings of ten consecutive presidential administrations. But her career in journalism ended abruptly in 2010 when she went on an anti-Semitic tirade in an interview with a rabbi.

Thomas, a daughter of Lebanese immigrants, told the rabbi that Israel should "get the hell out of Palestine," and that the Jewish people should go home to "Poland, Germany ... and America and everywhere else."

After the video was posted, Thomas wrote on her web site, “I deeply regret my comments I made last week regarding the Israelis and the Palestinians. They do not reflect my heartfelt belief that peace will come to the Middle East only when all parties recognize the need for mutual respect and tolerance. May that day come soon."