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The Boston Globe

Nation

Hagel grilled during confirmation hearing

WASHINGTON — Chuck Hagel, President Obama’s nominee as defense secretary, confronted withering criticism during a marathon confirmation hearing Thursday, but administration officials said they felt confident that the Republican-led attacks did not derail his bid to lead the Pentagon.

Lawmakers from both parties spent roughly eight hours grilling Hagel about remarks he has made at various points of his career and the votes he had cast in the Senate. The nominee at times struggled as he sought to explain his past positions, in some cases distancing himself from them. But he offered a full-throated endorsement of the United States’ alliance with Israel, insisted that he has never advocated for unilateral nuclear disarmament, and called Iran an existential threat.

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