Forcing the Navy to sell cigarettes on ships: how the tobacco industry and politicians torpedoed Navy tobacco control

Am J Public Health. 2011 Mar;101(3):404-11. doi: 10.2105/AJPH.2010.196329. Epub 2011 Jan 13.


In 1986, the US Navy announced the goal of becoming smoke-free by 2000. However, efforts to restrict tobacco sales and use aboard the USS Roosevelt prompted tobacco industry lobbyists to persuade their allies in Congress to legislate that all naval ships must sell tobacco. Congress also removed control of ships' stores from the Navy. By 1993, the Navy abandoned its smoke-free goal entirely and promised smokers a place to smoke on all ships. Congressional complicity in promoting the agenda of the tobacco industry thwarted the Navy's efforts to achieve a healthy military workforce. Because of military lobbying constraints, civilian pressure on Congress may be necessary to establish effective tobacco control policies in the armed forces.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Commerce / legislation & jurisprudence
  • Federal Government
  • Government Regulation
  • Health Policy*
  • Humans
  • Military Personnel*
  • Politics*
  • Smoking / epidemiology*
  • Smoking Cessation / economics
  • Smoking Prevention*
  • Tobacco Industry / ethics*
  • United States / epidemiology
  • United States Government Agencies