Whitney Houston in Israel to record with polygamous
JERUSALEM (AFP) - US pop diva Whitney Houston arrived in Israel's southern
Negev desert to make a recording with the polygamous Black Hebrew sect,
Israel army radio reported.
Houston, who arrived with her husband and former singer Bobby Brown and
their children, travelled straight to the desert town of Dimona, which is
home to the 2,000-strong sect and renowned for being the site of an Israeli
"I love you all!" she shouted as crowds of fans met her in the remote desert
Elders of the Black Hebrews said Houston would be recording a track about
Israel with several members of the community, which is known for its choirs
and singing groups. The visit was also aimed at sending a message to African
Americans that Israel was a safe place to travel to, they added.
Known as the Original African Hebrew Israelite Nation of Jerusalem, the
Black Hebrews believe they are descended from one of the lost ten tribes of
Israel as mentioned in the Bible. Strict dietary laws forbid the consumption
of meat and polygamy is permitted. The group first came to Israel in 1969,
and since then, members have earned a living through their celebrated
professional gospel choir and rhythm and blues singing troupes.
Two members of the community even represented Israel at the Eurovision Song
Contest in 1999. They are also renowned for the brightly-colored clothing
they make, and for the vegetarian food they produce at a factory in the
26 MAY 2003