I might add to JB Welda's post that OF COURSE these claims to be Hebrews are preposterous when taken in a literal sense. OF COURSE, Rastafarians are not that stupid as it is implied in Ranking Glasses' post. They have a highly developed sense of allegories, metaphors, etc...
They are not the only descendants of Africans who have used the Hebrew connection, as shown in the hundreds of Gospel songs created by North American members of the African diaspora.
It is worth reminding that for a long time, the only book that slaves were allowed was the Bible. So when those slaves read the Books of Exodus, Jeremiah and Kings, they must have felt an immediate connection, and quite naturally, some of them started calling themselves Hebrews.
Last, when Kennedy declared "Ich bin ein Berliner" in 1963, did anyone declare he was a goofball and that his claim was false????