Reporter Retires After Words About Israel

To many in Washington, two sets of rules seemed to apply for journalists covering the president: those for regular White House correspondents, and those for Helen Thomas.

To every president since John F. Kennedy, Ms. Thomas, 89, was known for posing questions in the kind of tough and provocative manner that could make press secretaries gasp and her colleagues cringe.

And it appears that her tart tongue may have finally ended her career. Ms. Thomas said on Monday that she was retiring, effective immediately, after an uproar over her recent remarks that Jews should “get the hell out of Palestine” and go home to “Poland, Germany and America and everywhere else.”

As the furor over her comments went viral, her speaking agency dropped her, a suburban Washington high school where she was scheduled to deliver a graduation speech disinvited her, and her colleagues threatened to take away her prized perch in the front row of the White House briefing room. Ms. Thomas could not be reached for comment.


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