Helen Thomas has announced that she is retiring, effective immediately, according to a statement from Hearst News Service. The announcement comes amid an uproar over the veteran journalist's comments about Israel.
Now, we await to see if she apologizes or otherwise talks further about her ridiculous comments that spawned the retirement.
UPDATE: 12:40 p.m. EDT: I'm sure the inevitable question of whether this "retirement" was voluntary will come up for discussion. Let's ignore the political niceties and get to the reality -- it was a face-saving move, for Thomas and for Hearst, her employer.
Scandals in Washington fester more so than anywhere else in the country because the national press corps has an easy, consistent story to cover. Ms. Thomas was about to become the center of that media glare. And Hearst would have gone along for the ride, and it certainly was a ride the media organization wanted no part of.
Moreover, Thomas, whenever she appeared at a media event, would have been asked about the scandal, and unless and until she issued a full apology (with language the media pack would have been comfortable with) it wouldn't have stopped.