15:15 GMT +320 January 2020
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    The Obama administration sought to destroy the former US defense secretary at the cost of addressing national security issues, former Department of Defense chief Chuck Hagel told the journal Foreign Policy on Friday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Hagel explained he was an outcast from President Barack Obama’s inner circle, and added that important National Security Council meetings were often needlessly long and unproductive.

    Obama administration officials would spend too much time on "nit-picky, small things in the weeds," Hegel said, and would not focus on pressing national security issues.

    "We seemed to veer away from the big issues. What was our political strategy on Syria?" he asked.

    Hagel also noted that administration officials criticized his assessment of Daesh, particularly his claim that the terror group was "beyond anything the United States has seen."

    Last November, Obama announced Hegel would step down as head of the Defense Department and claimed his departure had been mutually agreed, however, US media reported Hegel’s resignation came as a result of White House pressure.


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