In the world of political journalism, it's the end of an era: Helen Thomas has retired just months shy of her 90th birthday.
The longtime White House journalist has covered every president since Dwight Eisenhower and broke several barriers for female journalists but stepped down from her latest role -- a columnist for Hearst Newspapers -- in the wake of controversial remarks made in late May about the need for Jews to "get the hell out of Palestine" and return to Poland and Germany.
"Helen Thomas announced Monday that she is retiring, effective immediately," read a statement from Hearst Newspapers on Monday. "Her decision came after her controversial comments about Israel and the Palestinians were captured on videotape and widely disseminated on the Internet."
Thomas said in a statement that, "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.’’