Barack Obama, Chuck Hagel

There will be a changing of the guard at the Pentagon. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel is on his way out.

FOX News Radio's Rachel Sutherland reports from the White House:

Calling him a great friend, President Obama announced the coming departure of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

(President Obama) "Chuck has been an exemplary Defense Secretary."

Senior defense officials tell FOX News Secretary Hagel was actually fired after months of tension, but during the official announcement in the State Dining Room, President Obama said Hagel came to him and determined:

(President Obama) "Having guided the department through this transition, it was an appropriate time for him to complete his service"

Secretary Hagel will stay on the job until a new Defense Secretary is confirmed.

At the White House, Rachel Sutherland, FOX News Radio.