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Hagel: NSA Chief Alexander Has Done A 'Phenomenal Job'

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AP Photo / Evan Vucci

"Gen. Alexander's just done a phenomenal job," Hagel told Foreign Policy. "He is one individual who is capable of doing that job the way he did it at a very difficult time, and he deserves great credit."

Hagel also said that the NSA has been doing a great service to the country and has been operating within the law.

"Everything our intelligence community has been doing has been within the scope of the law," Hagel said. "It's a dangerous world. Intelligence is critically important, it saves lives, it is as critical a component of our national security as anything."