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White evangelical Christians are some of Israel's biggest supporters. Why?

At a march in support of Israel, one woman holds a sign saying, "Christians Stand with Israel."
Getty Images
At a march in support of Israel, one woman holds a sign saying, "Christians Stand with Israel."

As war continues to rage in the Middle East, attention has been turned to how American Jews, Muslims, and Palestinians relate to the state of Israel. But when we talk about the region, American Christians, particularly evangelical Christians, are often not part of that story. But their political support for Israel is a major driver for U.S. policy — in part because Evangelicals make up an organized, dedicated constituency with the numbers to exert major influence on U.S. politics. So today on the show, we're looking into the history and theology behind how white evangelical Christians became so connected to Israel, and what that connection looks like in the public square.

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Gene Demby is the co-host and correspondent for NPR's Code Switch team.
Jess Kung
Jess Kung (they/them) is a production assistant on Code Switch. Previously, they interned with Code Switch and the podcast The Document from KCRW in Santa Monica. They are a graduate of Long Beach State University.
Leah Donnella is an editor on NPR's Code Switch team, where she helps produce and edit for the Code Switch podcast, blog, and newsletter. She created the "Ask Code Switch" series, where members of the team respond to listener questions about how race, identity, and culture come up in everyday life.
Courtney Stein
Courtney Stein comes to NPR from the New York Times, where she helped to create the weekly podcast First Person. Prior to that, she spent over a decade at WNYC's Peabody Award-winning Radio Rookies, teaching young people to report radio documentaries about issues important to them. While at WNYC, Courtney also helped to pilot the podcast Nancy and was on the team that created the dupont-Columbia award-winning podcast Caught: The Lives of Juvenile Justice, which began as a radio workshop she started in a juvenile detention center in Queens.
Christina Cala is a producer for Code Switch. Before that, she was at the TED Radio Hour where she piloted two new episode formats — the curator chat and the long interview. She's also reported on a movement to preserve African American cultural sites in Birmingham and followed youth climate activists in New York City.
Xavier Lopez
Xavier Lopez is a producer for Code Switch. He came to NPR from CNN Audio, where he helped produce shows such as Chasing Life with Dr. Sanjay Gupta and the inaugural season of Tug of War. Prior to that, Lopez worked at NPR member station WHYY in Philadelphia, where he worked on shows such as The Pulse, Radio Times with Marty Moss-Coane and the daily news podcast, The Why.
B.A. Parker
[Copyright 2024 NPR]
Lori Lizarraga
Award-winning journalist Lori Lizarraga is a co-host of NPR's Code Switch, the preeminent podcast about race and identity in America. Before joining NPR, she reported across the country in Texas, California, Colorado and internationally in Ecuador. She has a reputation for breaking news and a passion and energy for covering under-reported communities, civil rights and issues surrounding immigration and Latinos in the U.S.
Veralyn Williams
Veralyn Williams (she/her) is a Peabody and Edward R. Murrow award-winning journalist who has been asking hard questions about our world since she picked up her first microphone in 2004. Now she brings her skills (and ears) to her role as executive producer of programming at NPR.