In 2009 she talked about how she would have asked then-President Bush, “why do you continue to support the killing in Gaza?,” and notes that he “is passing on to President-elect Obama two wars and an economic debacle.” The interview concludes:
AMY GOODMAN: Well, Helen Thomas, I want to thank you for being with us. You’re famous for saying at the end of every news conference, “Thank you, Mr. President.”
HELEN THOMAS: Thank you.
AMY GOODMAN: I say to you, thank you, Helen Thomas.
Democracy Now! also interviewed Thomas in 2007 at the Media Reform Conference in Memphis.
Thomas became the first woman assigned to the White House full time by a news service when she began to cover the Kennedy administration. She retired in 2010 amid a firestorm of criticism over comments she made on the Israel-Palestine conflict. In a brief video interview with the website RabbiLive.com, Thomas said her message to Israelis is to “get the hell out of Palestine.” Thomas also suggested Israeli Jews should return to Poland, Germany or the United States. Thomas later issued a statement saying, “I deeply regret my comments I made last week regarding the Israelis and the Palestinians. They do not reflect my heart-felt 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.”
In 2011, Thomas’ byline returned to a newspaper in the Washington, D.C., area when she began writing a column for the Falls Church News-Press, a weekly paper in Virginia.