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MAD magazine cover talks about the idea of assassinating Fidel Castro with an exploding cigar.

In the early 1960's, rumors circulated about a CIA plot to assassinate the communist Cuban leader, Fidel Castro, using an exploding cigar. Although usually seen as a comedy prop and practical joke item, the CIA alleges that several successfully lethal cigars were built, although the assassination never came to fruition.


A ballistic gel torso, with a realistic human face (complete with eyes, mouth, teeth, and tongue), was set up at an office mock-up as a stand-in Castro. When former CIA operative Mike Baker placed the cigar in the dummy's mouth and lit it, four minutes later, the weapon exploded. Although the smallest explosive seen on the show to date, the C4 inside the cigar was able to totally blow off the lower half of the dummy's face, right down to the bone: an instant kill.