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Helen Thomas Joins Falls Church News-Press

by ARLnow.com January 6, 2011 at 9:07 am 14,277 77 Comments

Former White House correspondent Helen Thomas has come out of a seven-month retirement to write a column for the Falls Church News-Press.

Thomas was a long-time fixture in the front row of the White House briefing room, having begun her daily White House coverage in 1960. She resigned as a columnist for Hearst Newspapers last year after making controversial remarks about Jews and Israel. When asked by a video camera-wielding rabbi what she thought of Israel, Thomas said that Jews should “get the hell out of Palestine” and “go home” to Germany, Poland and the U.S.

Thomas, 90, will now be writing a weekly political affairs column exclusively for the News-Press.

“She is progressive, and following my more than eight hours of direct, one-on-one talks with her since the events of last June, I remain firmly convinced that she is neither bigoted, nor racist, nor anti-Semitic,” News-Press owner Nicholas Benton is quoted as saying in an article announcing Thomas’ column. Benton said he’s happy to be giving Thomas a “second chance.”

In her column today, Thomas spends more than 750 words discussing the history of Social Security and “perennial Republican attempts to partially privatize the program.”

“Let’s not give the newly empowered Republicans… the ability to wipe out or even mitigate the only economic security deprived Americans can count on,” Thomas concludes. “Where is their heart?”

The News-Press is distributed free of charge in parts of Falls Church and Arlington.

Screen capture via YouTube

  • Arlwhenever

    Helen, the kook, is totally out of touch. There is, in fact, no economic security in the Social Security system because not a penny of the contributions was put aside and invested as assumed by the supporting actuarial models. The only economic security for retirement comes from our own savings and investments, which best be heavily weighted towards gold, silver, oil and other commodities, as the Fed continues to heat up the proverbial printing presses to stand in for the maladministration of Social Security (and Medicare).

    • Helen thomas is great ! she has a stellar reputation for reporting honestly and openly ,news that clairfies understand for the public to know events around the world ! openly snd bravely speaking out ,even on issues controversial and unpopular, her sincerity to people being informed, makes her an ikon in journalism ! Im so glad she is renewed in being a voice for us all ! being assertive does have its penalties,especially when confronting “gods choosen people ” with the mirade of injustices perpatrated by the “ruling class JEWS IN AMERICA !

      • Mehoo — We prefer not to see George Carlin’s seven dirty words, except when presented like: f–k and s–t.

        There are restrictions, however, on name calling and ad hominem attacks that we try to enforce.

        • mehoo

          Okay, no problem. It was worth it though.

        • Dude Where’s My Car

          Have you guys looked at Disqus? It would cut down on the trolling.

      • QPGirl

        Seriously? So anti-Semitism is alive and well in Arlington. How sad.

        • Dude Where’s My Car

          No, it’s just the same racist sockpuppet comment troll vying for more attention. Don’t feed teh troll.

          • mehoo

            My profane response was deleted. Probably a good thing.

      • JackFan

        thanks for trying mehoo 🙂 but sideboom is a idiotic, racist troll angling for a response.

        • mehoo

          Yeah, I noticed. And he’s not the only one.

      • Listen to Brink

        Our anti-Semitic friend SIDEBOOM might want to listen to Del. Bob Brink (http://bluevirginia.us/diary/2771/del-bob-brink-we-will-fight-efforts-to-divide-usto-instill-fear-and-hatred-in-virginians), who ways we will “fight efforts to divide us, fight efforts to instill fear and hatred in us.”

  • CJR

    I used to live in Falls Church and got the Falls Church News Press – would never have paid for such a liberal opinionated paper, but since it was delivered for free – it was good for the real estate section (when my house kept going up). But now that Helen Thomas is there, certainly no appearance of it being a neutral paper – but will the paper now be anti-semitic? Just zinging you Helen like you did Pres. Bush 🙂

    • Novanglus

      “Will the paper now be anti-Semitic?”

      During the Moran Iraq-war conrtroversy, that paper ran an editorial supporting Moran and blaming the whole contorversy on the Zionists who control politically correct thought in America (or something like that). I only heard about it because a reprint landed on my doorstep the day before that election, with a tagline saying it was paid for by Moran’s campaign. I had supported Moran every election before that, but haven’t voted for him since.

      Thomas should feel right at home at the FCNP.

    • Ryan

      All of you people commenting about hows shes anti-semitic are morons, she is of Lebanese descent, she is semitic. It’s shocking how that phrase is tossed around just because the Zionist controlled media doesn’t fell comfortable with someone criticizing israel. The majority of israels population doesn’t have a drop of semitic blood in them. I applaud the paper for picking her up, it’s called free speech deal with it.

      Milwaukee WI

  • Aaron

    Are they paying her for this? Do they pay any of their employees? I am at a complete loss as to FCNP’s (or the Sun Gazette’s) business model is supposed to work.

    • Westover

      Advertisements, same way newspapers have always made their revenue. The newstand/subscription price just takes care of the costs of distribution, at most.

  • My heart? It is broken for the the direction that the US is headed. We are bankrupt and still sliding further into the hole. Someone is going to call us on things eventually and it is going to be ugly.

  • TGEoA

    Putting lipstick on a Nazi.

    • Dude Where’s My Car

      Whoa, Nazi? Isn’t that going a bit far? Just because she said Falls Church should annex the Sudetenland (something about “Lebensraum?”) that doesn’t make her a Nazi.

      • mehoo


  • Sarah

    Giving her a second chance? That’s one way to put it. I think they should consider themselves very fortunate that someone with such a storied career agreed to write for them.

    Go Helen!

    • Burger

      You ever hear of an old dog never learning new tricks.

  • .

    Social Security is not going to dry up in her remaining life time. I wish she would just collect her check and go away. I don’t care which side of the aisle you are on, she peaked about twenty years ago and has lost it a little more each year since. Just enjoy your retirement Helen and let a new crop of journalists that still have their mind intact carry the torch now.

    • Burger

      Social Security and Medicare need to be adjusted and that means some form of benefits cuts – that is reality. the deficit commission did a decent job of taking a stab at it. Many people were outraged about the proposals. Of course, the proposals were asking the current 4 years (those that would be impacted by changes and haven’t even started working) to take less out and not seniors. If my 3 year can’t make the necessary steps to save for her retirement in 65 years. Shame on her.

      • Ina Ayliffe

        Why is there never a recommendation to cut the nilitary budget, end the wars, and bring our money home. Absolutely no cuts to social security or medicare, the programs that help to sustain low income citizens.

    • Damon Chappie

      There are no journalists anymore, just stenographers.

  • Anon

    Congratulations to Helen Thomas! Welcome back. We need more courageous journalists who now how to speak TRUTH to POWER.

    She has been around Washington, D.C. and knows how it works – unfortunately to the benefit of the corporations who “lobby” Congress to do their work… at a huge negative cost to the people.

    Keep shining that bright light of truth for the people and our democracy Helen!
    Thank you!
    “There is in the nature of government an impatience of control that disposes those invested with power – to look with an evil eye upon all external attempts to restrain or direct its operations.

    This has its origin in the love of power.

    Representatives of the people are not superior to the people themselves.” – Alexander Hamilton – Federalist Paper No.15, 1787.

  • JackFan

    Yeah…Go Helen! The Falls Church News Press was sorely lacking an anti-Semitic, bigoted viewpoint. Good to see that billet is filled…

  • AJ

    I’m a Falls Church resident. Good lord, how sad. FC is a very small affluent area inside the Beltway — very liberal. The paper is free and I believe they carried her syndicated column previously.

  • Garth

    Good for the Falls Church News Press.

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  • Chris121

    To state that Israel was built on land seized forcibly from the Palestinians is simply to acknowledge fact and is not tantamount to anti-Semitism. Many people think Jews have made many positive contributions to our country and to the world and–on a completely separate subject–believe that the 1948 founding of a theocracy in the Middle East, built on stolen land, was neither moral nor practical.

    Now obviously, Israel isn’t going anywhere, so the idea that it would repatriate entirely back to the Arabs is unrealistic. But they asked Helen–who can remember when this happened–what she thought, and she answered candidly.

    Oddly, Israelis themselves are more circumspect on this subject than are Americans.

    • Jack Davis

      Chris, please send me your schedule of Jew-baiting, synagogue-desecration and cross-burning so that I can keep up on things. Thanks!

      • mehoo

        That was completely unfair. Chris isn’t being anti-semitic. Read what he wrote. I’m not saying I agree with it, I’m saying it’s not motivated by hatred. It’s true that anti-Zionist statements are often motivated by hatred, but they aren’t necessarily. Even some conservative Jews believe that Israel shouldn’t exist.

  • MaydayMalone

    Since Falls Church is in the district of our anti semitic Congressman, this actually makes a lot of sense. Now I can line my birdcage with Moran flyers AND the Falls Church News Press (if it ever gets misdirected to my front porch).

  • Mark

    Yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah. Helen Thomas is not a an anti-semite at all. Especially true when Obama and Ari Fleischer said the comments were disgusting and she should be fired. Only the Muslims said she wasn’t an anti-semite.

    Lets look at some of the stuff she has said:


    Thomas outlined “Zionist” control of key government and media outlets at an event by Arab Detroit, a group dedicated to “promoting an accurate image about the Arab American community and the Arab world.” She stated, “We are owned by propagandists against the Arabs. There’s no question about that. Congress, the White House and Hollywood, Wall Street are owned by the Zionists.”

    Thomas defended her comments. “I just think that people should be enlightened as to who is in charge of the opinion in this country,” Thomas told a Marion, Ohio radio station WMRN-AM. She also responded defensively to the ADL’s comments, “They think they have the right of intimidation.” She also stated, “They already got my job. They want to get my honorary degrees.”

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  • JimPB

    90 years of age, mind still functioning well, and physically able to do the research for and then write columns. Way to go.

  • The Pope of South Arlington

    First, a non-Chosenite states the simple truth — that AIPAC dominates, controls and manipulates every facet of America’s foreign policy ; next, a huge Jewish swarm descends upon the transgressor from every direction and threatens his/her career and “reputation”; finally, either an “apology” or a resignation is wrung from their victim, thereby confirming the truth of what he/she had to say — and serving as a cautionary example to anyone else contemplating candor on the topic.

    • mehoo

      Do Jews control the media too, Dope?

      • The Pope of South Arlington

        The truth is an anti Semite.

  • Skeptical

    In the words of the “Overheard In The News Room” website, “You can hold something hot in one hand and something cold in the other, can’t you? Come on! I know you can do it!”

    That is, it’s possible to believe Helen Thomas has passed her sell-by date, and still think it is just as legitimate to critique the Israeli government as it is to critique the government of any other nation.

    It’s possible to find it preposterous that AIPAC or any other PAC controls American policy, but still note that our politics in the Middle East have had a lot to do with manipulations in our own self-interest involving preferential treatment of Israel.

    It’s possible to believe that, after the excesses of “Christian Europe” right through the 20th century, the idea of a Jewish homeland is a necessary one whose time has come, and still question the behavior of ALL SIDES in the resulting disputes.

    And please to any God or principle you care to invoke, I would like to think it is possible to enter into a discussion of those issues without having people immediately start to talk about synagogue desecration and cross burning.

    And they wonder why Congress can’t pull its head out of its collective hindquarters.

    • JackFan

      Who on this forum was equating her comments with ‘cross burning’ or ‘synagogue desecration’. It seems your analysis of some of the comments/critiques is as inflammatory as the rhetoric you purport to abhor.
      Oh – and for the record – Ms. Thomas’s comments for Jews to essentially ‘go back where they came from’ wasn’t just an indictment of Israel but an indictment of Jewish peoples as well. For people not to see the distinction is mind boggling. If a respected journalist had told African Americans to ‘just go back to Africa’ – there wouldn’t be a “second chance”.
      That said – I think Helen Thomas was (WAS) a voice of reason many times in the press corps. Sad that her legacy of pushing for government accountability and transparency has been overshadowed by her obvious and evident bigotry.

      • JackFan

        My bad…just saw JackDavis’s comment. However – not going to backtrack on my opinion of Helen Thomas and the fact that she’s a bigot.

    • ThereISaidIt

      Spot on. I have no idea whether or not Helen truly is anti-semetic, but that term has lost all meaning. It used to describe somebody who doesn’t like Jewish people, but now it’s simply used to describe someone that the Jewish people don’t like. Including anyone with the audacity to commit the taboo of calling Israeli policy into question. It’s ridiculous.

      If you believe that any people deserve to have their own theocracy as a result of persecution (and I think that’s a pretty big “IF” … theocracies never end well) then Germany should’ve been given to the Jews after WWII. Only problem is Germany’s full of natural resources and white people. Palestine, on the other hand, is arid and full of brown people, so why the Hell not?

      • JackFan

        Your argument makes no sense. Israel isn’t a theocracy…it’s a democracy. Big difference. For you to argue otherwise is idiotic.
        And I don’t throw out the anti-Semitic remark when people criticize Israel. there is much to criticize about Israel – like many other countries. I do however find it anti-Semitic when people make derogatory, blanket statements about Jews. And for ‘going back to Europe’ – many Jews ended up concentrated in certain parts of Europe b/c of widespread persecution. It’s called the diaspora. Try reading history sometime.

        • ThereISaidIt

          Although Israel is run as a democracy, it was founded in order to serve a single religion, and its guiding principles and entire identity are inseparably tied to that religion. So is it truly run by the church proper in the day to day? No. But let’s be honest: it walks like a duck, and talks like a duck…

  • CMG

    You can’t ignore the remark about going back to the European countries where 6.5 million Jews were murdered, though…

    • ThereISaidIt

      I’ll admit at first blush it seems horribly abrasive and insensitive. But if you think about it, it’s nothing like saying blacks should go back to Africa because blacks (for the most part) weren’t brought here by choice. Rather, it’s like saying that WHITE people should go back to Europe because we stole this land from someone else and continue to treat those people poorly.

      Your comment also seems intended to suggest that those people might face some danger of being murdered again if they returned to those same countries where the Holocaust occurred, when that’s obviously not the case.

      The Holocaust, horrible as it was, is sadly not unique in man’s history of persecution and genocide. And yet Jews/zionism are the only people/issue that we seem to tiptoe around on eggshells, living in fear of the slightest offense. What gives?

      Personally, I don’t think she’s a bigot. I think she’s just too damn old to tiptoe around issues like we do, so she calls them out as she sees them. She doesn’t think that Israel treats Palestine fairly, and she thinks that the formation of the state in the first place was probably a mistake. But we’ve become so PC about the whole thing that saying such a thing out loud labels her as some kind of foaming-at-the-mouth white supremacist.

      • ThereISaidIt

        Sorry – meant to reply to CMG above.

  • Hank

    You have got to be kidding me — how can they support this bigot?!?
    I would say that this is the last time I read the Falls Church News-Press, but that would imply I even knew this publication existed.
    I hope this publications loses all of its advertisements.

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  • CrystalMikey

    Man, her picture scares me. Clowns give me nightmares too…

  • JackFan

    Ryan from MI – congrats my friend. You are both an idiot AND a bigot. Nice work!

  • I love how people say things with balls behind a computer. Mrs. Thomas was the only one I saw in the press asking the hard questions to Bush when he lied to our country.

    Everyone makes mistakes and deserves to explain themselves.

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