JFK bought 1200 Cigars from Cuba in 1962
John Fitzgerald Kennedy became president of the United States from 1961 until he was murdered in 1963. He was the 35th president of the US and before his death, he was campaigning for re-election to the White House. Chronicles about the life of JFK from numerous sources indicate that he used to smoke cigarettes.

The suppliers of cigars to the man in the White House then, aren't clear. JFKs' head of press, Mr. Salinger has diverged detailed information to different publications on some personal preferences of the President. He preferred the Cuban brand of cigarettes which are known as Petit Upmann which according to smokers, are of good quality.

By the year 1960 President Dwight

Cuba is one of the countries in the Caribbean having a bad history with US. The bad blood started way back in 1953, when armed rebellion led by Fidel Castro toppled the then Cuban President Batista. Rebels waged a guerrilla war against the government that lasted for five years up to 1958. Fidel Castro was imposed as the Cuban leader, prompting the US to impose an embargo against Cuba. The embargo prohibited continued the sale of arms to the Cuban government under the rebel leader Fidel Castro.

By the year 1960 President Dwight David Eisenhower of the US slapped Cuba with other trade embargoes. The trade embargo was on all US exports to Cuba with exceptions to food and medical supplies. US wanted to show her disapproval to Fidel Castro regime whose establishment was undemocratic.

Pierre Salinger, the head of press

The 35th president of the US, JFK escalated the trade embargo in the year 1962. New embargo by the former President of the US banned all products from Cuba. This action was taken because Fidel Castro took over American owned Cuban oil companies and converted them to parastatals. The takeover was hostile and owners' of these companies were not reimbursed their money by the Cuban government.

Pierre Salinger, the head of press for JFK recounted that it was during the signing of the embargo when the president made an unusual request. According to Pierre, JFK asked him to get him 1200 cigarettes from Cuba before signing the papers. Trade embargo JFK was about to sign forbade export of cigars from Cuba henceforth and any other products. The US in essence prohibited all exports to Cuba when JFK signed the trade embargo of 1962.

JFK bought 1200 Cigars from Cuba in 1962

Interesting though, is the request by the President to have stock of Cuban cigars before the embargo came into effect. Salinger did all he could to bring his President what he needed before halting business with Cuba. It seems JFK loved Cuban cigars more than any other product coming from the Caribbean country. Petit Upmann cigarettes from Cuba were pioneered in the close of 19th century by a German banker who was a chain smoker.

This Cigarette brand has grown through the years to become one that is most cherished by smokers. The company that currently makes the petit upmann cigars is state-owned and sells to domestic consumers and abroad, where US embargo is not recognised.

JFK wasn't the only US President who loved cigars, the Cuban Petit Upmann according to history of the US former Presidents. This is going by the archived pictures and library of books on cigarette smoking habits among US Presidents. Franklin Roosevelt appears in numerous vintage pictures with a cigarette between his lips while relaxing. According to multiple sources, he is said to have smoked lots of cigars during his tenure at the White House.

The President who was succeeded by JFK, Dwight Eisenhower smoked cigarettes before standing for election as President. He had to quit smoking following advice from a doctor that smoking posed a danger to his health. By the time he ascended to the presidency, he had completely quit smoking cigarettes. Richard Nixon is also reported to have been a smoker before going to the White House and never abandoned cigars completely after becoming President. Not only was he into cigarettes smoking but books have been written about Nixons' drinking problem. The drinking problem brought tensions inside the White House, some of his advisers threatening to resign.

Most current former President of the US known for cigar smoking is Barrack Obama the 44th President. He admitted to occasional struggle with smoking and would invite some guests of the White House for some cigar smoking session. JFKs' love for Cigars wasn't an Isolated case as we can from the above history. Maybe the Cuban cigarettes were his favourite and that's why he needed a reserve because if he needed them again after the embargo, It would have been impossible.

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