Both houses of Congress on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly to override President Obama’s veto of a bill that would allow family members of victims of terrorist attacks on US soils to sue foreign nations for their alleged involvement in such attacks. The Senate vote was 97-1 and the vote in the House was 348-77. The bill opens the door for the families of victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks to sue Saudi Arabia. The Senate approved the bill in May and the House did so in early September. The President vetoed the bill last week over concerns that such a law might invite retaliatory lawsuits against US military members serving abroad. The President’s concern was echoed this week by Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford as well as Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, both of whom wrote letters to Congress expressing their concerns, Politico reported. Nevertheless, the bill gained widespread support from lawmakers, including Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.