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Pentagon chief Hagel out as IS war heats up

US President Barack Obama announces the resignation of US Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel on November 24, 2014President Barack Obama announced the departure of US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Monday, with the White House under fire over perceived fumbling in its response to the Islamic State threat. Rapid advances by Islamic State jihadists in Syria and Iraq forced the Pentagon chief into managing a complex campaign, and Obama concluded Hagel was not the man for the task. The 68-year-old Vietnam war veteran joined Obama at the White House to confirm his departure. “When I asked Chuck to serve as secretary of defense we were entering a significant period of transition: the drawdown in Afghanistan, the need to prepare our forces for future missions and tough fiscal choices to keep our military strong and ready,” Obama said.

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