It's Only Cigars: Publication
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My perception of the wording in the Treasury section of my ‘then current’ passport was, ‘As of November 1963, the purchase or importation of Cuban... goods...are generally prohibited, except for... limited goods imported directly as accompanied baggage.’ And, ‘Transactions related to travel in or to Cuba... are generally prohibited.’

     On page two in the Custom’s Service of my ‘then current’ passport was, ‘The pamphlet Know Before You Go gives you current information about Custom’s requirements and how they apply to articles acquired abroad. Obtain a copy from your nearest Customs office...’

On page six in the Custom’s Department Know Before You Go pamphlet under Cigars and Cigarettes was: ‘Not more than one hundred cigars... may be included in your exemption.Products of Cuban tobacco may be included in your exemption if purchased in Cuba, see page 20.’

     On page twenty-three of the Know Before You Go pamphlet, in blocked print, was the word MERCHANDISE. The first paragraph stated: ‘The importation of goods from the following countries is generally prohibited... Cuba.’ The third paragraph, second sentence read, ‘Spending money on travel related transactions involving Cuba... is... closely controlled and monitored. Because of... strict enforcement of prohibitions, anyone considering travel to any country listed above should contact the Office of Foreign Assets Control.’

     My perception of the ‘then current’ passport in conjunction with the Custom’s Know Before You Go pamphlet was the following:

     Were one not to spend money on travel-related transactions, airline fares and hotel bills, they were allowed to or, in the minimum, not prohibited from traveling to Cuba. Since no money would be spent on those transactions, prohibitions and restrictions wouldn’t be violated… and the Office of Foreign Assets Control only controlled and monitored the spending of money. The public was only advised (should), not ordered (must), to contact the government were they considering travel to Cuba... meaning travelers didn’t require permission (per se) to go there. Once there, a limited number of cigars (100) as stated in the Custom’s pamphlet Know Before You Go could be acquired and imported into America… provided they were ‘imported directly as accompanied baggage.’