funny-no-smoking-sign

WASHINGTON (CNN) — You’ve seen the iconic picture of a soldier with a cigarette dangling from his mouth, but that could soon be a thing of the past. A new study commissioned by the Pentagon and the Department of Veterans Affairs recommends a complete ban on tobacco, which would end tobacco sales on military bases and prohibit smoking by anyone in uniform, not even combat troops in the thick of battle.

According to the study, tobacco use impairs military readiness in the short term. Over the long term, it can cause serious health problems, including lung cancer and cardiovascular disease. The study also says smokeless tobacco use can lead to oral and pancreatic cancer. The Defense Department’s top health officials are studying the report’s suggestions and will make recommendations to the Pentagon’s policy team and Defense Secretary Robert Gates. The study recommends phasing out tobacco products such as cigarettes and cigars over a five- to 10-year period.

However, the suggested ban does not sit well with many in uniform, including retired Gen. Russel Honore, best known for coordinating military relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina-affected areas with an ever-present stogie. He said soldiers at war need to puff. “When you’re tired and you’ve been going days on end with minimum sleep, and you are not getting the proper meals on time, that hit of tobacco can make a difference,” said Honore, who was in charge of the Army’s training programs before he retired. Other soldiers questioned whether this was a good time to stamp out smoking, given the Army’s concern with a high suicide rate.

They needed a study for this? Really?




  1. Sea Lawyer says:

    #29, Noted. I’ll take your conjecture for what it is.

  2. John E. Quantum says:

    In a perfect world no one would use tobacco, and there would be no armed conflicts.

    This study has a fatal flaw. To correctly asses the cost/ benefit ratio the bean counters need to be exposed to live fire from someone that is seriously trying to do them harm.

  3. Jägermeister says:

    #30 – DA

    Bingo! Excellent post.

  4. Toxic Asshead says:

    We wouldn’t have to endanger our soldiers and we could also reduce our nuclear arsenal if we would start using the damn things. There are a lot of foreign places that need to be nuked. We sohould do it.

  5. MikeN says:

    Jager, it’s simple. Smoking has certain health care costs, but it is less than the amount that non-smokers incur by living longer.

    Your other statement is conjecture. Plus I haven’t noticed too many soldiers who take cigarette breaks in the middle of combat.

  6. Tonsils out says:

    I must congratulate the Pentagon for its study, they are well ahead of us on the matter, I did not know that smoking could be dangerous also for soldiers.

  7. Troublemaker says:

    Pentagon Study: Smoking is Hazardous to Soldiers Health

    How about fuckin’ bullets???

  8. chudez says:

    uhmm… just being in the military is hazardous to your health.

  9. Lou says:

    I’d rather have a smoke than get shipped to Iraq.

  10. I'm fuming says:

    You want to take away smokes from people who are willing to give their lives up for someone else’s democracy? LOL good luck, they are trained to fight. They will fight to the death for freedom to smoke. I think the pentagon knows better and are simply conducting the study to appease all the no-smoke freaks. The pentagon is full of a lot of smart people, thank God! Cripes, 95% of those who enlist join the military now because it’s the only way they can smoke without being fined by the Nazi smoke police in free-country-America.

  11. RTaylor says:

    Some posters understand the culture of the military, others that never served do not. That said society has change greatly since WWII. Tobacco is a stress reliever. K rations contained matches and three cigarettes. Sometimes you have to live for the day.

  12. Mike D says:

    Unbelievable

    It is very obvious who served and who is a clueless armchair critic.

    Healthcare costs, productivity; tell you what. We’ll give you a uniform and send you to the front lines. Survive a tour-no need to worry because we’ll send you back, again and again. Oh, not your style, too much effort, bad hair day?
    The country made a promise to the veterans – when I was in. Serve honorably and all healthcare will be provided for life free, plus other benefits. That was part of the deal. You’re putting your life on the line. No qualifiers, no income test, nothing. Well it seems the country shafted the vets on this one – liars! If you are not going to honor an agreement, then don’t make it. See how many takers you have on your new and “better” offer. What does this have to do with smoking – everything. Before even considering banning anything, provide a real – tangible alternative. Either way this is part of the price you and I pay, and will continue to pay.
    Let’s see you dodge the sniper fire, shrapnel, IEDs, etc., day after day. It tends to get on ones nerves. Stress relief is a must, but we must be socially correct because of armchair know nothings. Don’t believe me – go visit a National Cemetery – read about the suicides, both deployed and after returning. Live with the hell you have witnessed and participated in. Smokes are a stress relief here and now. Sorry, but yoga and meditation are not very conducive to living another day in the wonderful adventure land environment. It’s real. Make a mistake and you die. There is no reset button. I have seen many non-smokers pick up the habbit when deployed. Gee, I can’t imagine why.
    If you did not serve you have no say – period. Pay taxes – so what? You pay your taxes to employ someone else to fight your battles and ensure your freedom.
    The Pentagon’s political correctness in some areas is very disturbing. Perhaps the staff needs re-education on the front lines, for extended periods, to refresh their memories.

  13. Ralph, the Bus Driver says:

    #42, Mike,

    If you did not serve you have no say – period. Pay taxes – so what? You pay your taxes to employ someone else to fight your battles and ensure your freedom.

    Wrong. The military work for Americans, not for themselves. The military does and goes when, what, and where we tell them to. They wear the uniform they are given. They act in accordance with the policies given.

    Anyone wishing to set their own agenda is NOT doing their sworn duty and is subject to court martial. Step too far over the line and you risk the label of traitor.

    My wife didn’t serve. Are you suggesting she has no right to have a voice in setting policy? Fuck you poser.

  14. BdgBill says:

    In all seriousness, I think we need a law that prevents any more federal money from being spent on tobacco studies. The question has been answered. Tobacco will kill you – we get it.

  15. JimD says:

    The Tobacco Companies got started in WWI giving out FREE CIGARETES – WITH THE WAR DEPT’S APPOROVAL !!! Poisoning soldiers for a VERY LONG TIME !!!

  16. Sea Lawyer says:

    #44, Ralph

    So what are you going to do, start courtmartialling privates for smoking cigarettes? Too harsh? I guess we can just NJP them with 45 days confinement to the barracks, so they can think about how much their smoking affects the taxpayers.

  17. notbush says:

    Soldiers have no rights until they leave service. Tell them what they will or won’t do and punish them if they break the rules.

    We’ve seen in Iraq that soldiers are just in it for the killing and bullying, or bullshit Repuke “patriotism”.

    I don’t give a damn if they are jittery or not. Should have gotten a real job.

  18. Mr. Fusion says:

    #47, SL,

    So what are you going to do, start courtmartialling privates for smoking cigarettes?

    Sure why not? They can already be court martialed for being gay or smoking pot, two things guaranteed to be less harmful to their health.

  19. Rick Cain says:

    The military isn’t a democracy. Smokers will just have to deal with it.

  20. sea lawyer says:

    Sure why not? They can already be court martialed for being gay or smoking pot, two things guaranteed to be less harmful to their health.

    Speaking of gays. There is a reason why there exists a general resentment within the military of the civilian population, and a lot of it has to do with things like gay men flamboyently parading down the street in leather chaps, while a Marine corporal is told he can’t wear flip-flops on liberty.

  21. sea lawyer says:

    #48, Soldiers have no rights until they leave service. Tell them what they will or won’t do and punish them if they break the rules.

    good to see clueless assholes like you still view the military as being a gang of dumb conscripts from the 18th century.

  22. Rick's Cafe says:

    Next thing you know, they’ll make being fat illegal too. Oh wait, that a different post about the Surgeon General.


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