First Word: NSA chief defends surveillance as helping stop over 50 attacks

Updated
NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, June 18, 2013, before the House Intelligence Committee.
NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, June 18, 2013, before the House Intelligence Committee.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP

The House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence is holding a hearing Tuesday on the government’s recently disclosed surveillance programs. Last week, National Security Agency Director Keith Alexander said that these programs helped thwart “dozens” of terror plots, and is expected to go into detail during the hearing. “I would much rather be here today debating this point than trying to explain how we failed to prevent another 9/11,” Alexander said.

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First Word: NSA chief defends surveillance as helping stop over 50 attacks

Updated