'Jeopardy!' Sparks Social Media Uproar With Bethlehem Question
2:04 PM PST 1/12/2020

Contestants were asked where the Church of the Nativity was located and gave differing answers.

Jeopardy! on Friday waded into controversial territory when contestants were asked a question about Bethlehem.

Prompted with the clue, "Built in the 300s A.D., the Church of the Nativity" under the "Where's the Church?" category, contestant Katie Needle answered, "What is Palestine?" Host Alex Trebek told Needle her answer was incorrect. When contestant Jack McGuire answered, "What is Israel?" he was deemed correct.

Palestinian rights advocates erupted over the question, given that the Church of the Nativity is located in Bethlehem on the West Bank, in Palestinian territories. The territories are currently occupied by Israel.

"Unacceptable!! Bethlehem is in the Palestinian territories which Israel illegally occupies (Katie Needle got the correct answer & was robbed)," Arab American Institute deputy director Omar Baddar tweeted. "@Jeopardy owes an apology for endorsing Israel's universally-condemned illegal takeover of Palestinian lands."

AJ+ senior producer and host Sana Seed tweeted, "Hey @Jeopardy - the Church of Nativity is in Bethlehem, which is located in the West Bank which - under international law - is occupied by Israel. The occupied land is also known, under international law, as the Occupied Palestinian Territories."

"The Church of the Nativity is in Bethlehem, which is Palestine, NOT Israel," another Twitter user tweeted, with a swear word. "The woman answered Palestine and you ruled her wrong."

ABC and Sony Pictures TV have not yet returned a request for comment.

Needles, a retail supervisor from Brooklyn, ultimately won the game, for a total winnings of $53,602 so far.