Helen Thomas said on a radio show that aired Tuesday that the Anti-Defamation League was intimidating her. The journalist defended comments she made last Thursday in Dearborn.
"I just think that people should be enlightened as to who is in charge of the opinion in this country," Thomas, 90, told the Marion, Ohio, radio station WMRN-AM.
In response, ADL Director Abe Foxman told the Free Press on Wednesday that the group has a right to criticize Thomas, whose comments are "doing body blows to her image."
Thomas had said that Zionists control major U.S. institutions and Foxman, said her comments were "classic ... anti-Semitism." He called on groups to remove honors in her name. Hours later, Wayne State University pulled an award in her name.
Thomas, the daughter of Lebanese immigrants, grew up in Detroit and graduated from WSU.
"I'm going to tell the Anti-Defamation League to back off," Thomas said. "They think they have the right of intimidation." "They already got my job. They want to get my honorary degrees."
But Foxman, known for his work to combat anti-Semitism, said: "It's very sad that a woman of her stature ... just can't stop lashing out in anger."
To hear the interview, click here: www.wmrn.com/pages
Detroit Free Press