Obama Calls Helen Thomas Remark 'Offensive'

WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama says he considers veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas' remarks about Israel "offensive."

Asked during an interview with NBC about Thomas' comments saying Israel should "get the hell out of Palestine," Obama said he believes those statements were "out of line." At the same time, he said he recognized Thomas' long service covering presidents dating back to John F. Kennedy.

He said it was a "shame" that her career has ended in controversy, but called Thomas' retirement announcement "the right decision."

The 89-year-old Thomas retired Monday as a columnist for Hearst News Service.

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