Now comes Politico with the news that Ms Thomas has left Hearst Newspapers and gone into retirement. Frankly, this is sad news, almost as sad as her telling a Rabbi in a quick answer that the Jews should get out of Palestine and go back to Germany and Poland.
The woman is almost 90 and has broken many barriers for female journalists. She has covered the White House since Eisenhower was president, which is over 50 years. It would have been better if she had gone out with a dozen roses, given her by the President. Instead, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs noted that her comments did not reflect the view of the White House.
The story in today's Washington Post had the following as the lede:
The White House on Monday blasted veteran journalist Helen Thomas's remarks that Jews should leave Israel and go "home" to Germany, Poland and elsewhere as "offensive and reprehensible."The WashPost, further down in the story, noted that:
On May 27, during a White House commemoration of Jewish Heritage Month, Thomas gave an impromptu interview to a Web site called RabbiLIVE.com. Asked about recent arrests of Palestinians by Israel, Thomas said Israelis should "get the hell of Palestine."And went on from there.
We need an open and informing debate on all the issues in the Near East and the Middle East. For the White House this was not the start of such a debate, given the appearance of a White House that is withdrawing support from Israel, as George Anthes noted on today's "City Life".
Regards — Cliff