According the smoking example, you are completely wrong.
What I've observed suggests otherwise. And places that see it as 'uncool' generally had the same view before the advertising ban, making that point fairly moot anyway. But I'm talking more in general, than just specifically kids in this example.
why wasn't it as cool before they were distributed to the military and before massive advertisement campaigns?
Uh, it was, that's why they had those huge tobacco plantations in the americas since the 17th century. Advertising wasn't about making it 'cool' or such, but so that people would buy brand X instead of brand Y.
What about McDonalds? It isn't the best fast food, it isn't really the cheapest, yet it is the most popular. Why? Because of their massive advertising.
While I agree that it's popularity amongst fast food can be credited to advertising, it is still only amongst 'fast food', i.e. without the advertising, people wouldn't be eating healthily instead, they'd just be going to other fast food places (burger king, KFC, etc.).
Also, with liberalism becoming more and more popular you need to look at why: Is it really peoples opinions changing on their own, or is it due to the media?
I think it is because of the media, but probably not in the same way you do, i.e. the media portray the population as far more overly liberal than they actually are.
What about religion? If you are Atheist you probably believe Religion was the biggest brainwashing story of all time, yet it still thrives and why? Because it was the most accepted thing in society to belong to a religion, until of course now where science is becoming a much bigger part in our daily lives.
Religion can be completely independent from science though.
And no, I don't think religion as a concept is brainwashing, it's just a way to try and explain the unexplainable, and some factors may actually be beneficial to mental health.
But my point is this: Your surroundings effect you much more than you believe they do, so knowing this do advertisements even though they pose a mediocre threat to a child's developing mind, aren't they still criminal?
Even though your surroundings do effect you, advertisements make up far less than 1% of you surroundings, interactions, experiences etc.
And it's not just the amount of time, but also the level of impact.
For example, it's been scientifically proven that violent videogames don't create violent kids (even if they play for hours every day), but kids who experience violence personally actually are more likely to become violent themselves.
Advertising is just a low-impact experience, compared to the high-impact experience of enjoyment of the food(or whatever is being advertised), and peer consensus (i.e. it being 'cool').