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FEATURING DR. STEPHEN ZUNES – The US Congress last week used its veto power for the first time during President Obama’s tenure to override his veto of the controversial 9/11 victims bill, officially known as the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act. The Senate vote was a whopping 97 to 1 with Harry Reid being the lone vote to side with Obama.

The bill was, by some accounts, intended to be a piece of political theater to expose US ties to Saudi Arabia. Under its provisions victims of the September 11th attacks could legally prosecute the Saudi Arabian government for its role in the terrorist incident and indeed one woman has done just that.

But with hours of the veto, some Republicans expressed “buyer’s remorse,” after realizing that it would open the US itself to legal attacks and jeopardize relations with other nations. GOP leaders like Mitch McConnell admitted, “It appears as if there may be some unintended ramifications.”

Read Stephen’s work at

Dr. Stephen Zunes is a Professor of Politics and International Studies at the University of San Francisco, where he serves as coordinator of the program in Middle Eastern Studies. He also serves as a senior policy analyst for Foreign Policy in Focus project of the Institute for Policy Studies, an associate editor of Peace Review.

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