Fox News national security correspondent Jennifer Griffin brought us the latest this hour from the Senate confirmation hearing of Secretary of Defense nominee Gen. James Mattis (Ret.).

Drawing a stark contrast with statements from President-elect Trump, the former Marine general expressed strong support for the NATO alliance, emphasizing that the United States needs the global partnership now more than ever. 

Mattis said NATO is vital to America's national interest and that the U.S. has a "short list of successes" when it comes to engaging positively with Russia.

He said the "reality," in his view, is that Vladimir Putin is trying to "break the North Atlantic alliance." He also issued a warning about the "world order" being under attack.

"I think [the world order is] under the biggest attack since World War II … from Russia, from terrorist groups and with what China is doing in the South China Sea," said Mattis.

Speaking on the Iran nuclear deal, Mattis said he views it as "imperfect" and would not have signed it. But Mattis cautioned against reneging on the agreement. 

"[It's] an imperfect arms control agreement, it's not a friendship treaty. When America gives their word, we have to live up to it," he said.

On a lighter note, Mattis seemed to indicate that he doesn't care for the nickname "Mad Dog," explaining that it was given to him by the media, not by his fellow Marines. 

It has been reported in recent months that Mattis, 66, actually was called the "warrior monk" in the Marines, partly due to the fact he never married.

Since Mattis has been out of the military for less than seven years, Congress must approve a waiver for him to serve as defense secretary. 

Watch the full report above.


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