Trump honours military dog at White House after al-Baghdadi raid

President on Conan, a Belgian Malinois: ‘Right now, probably the world’s most famous dog’

President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and first lady Melania Trump present Conan, the military working dog injured in the successful operation targeting Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, before the media in the Rose Garden at the White House, Monday, Nov. 25, 2019 in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Donald Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and first lady Melania Trump present Conan, the military working dog injured in the successful operation targeting Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, before the media in the Rose Garden at the White House, Monday, Nov. 25, 2019 in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

A U.S. military dog that played a starring role in the raid that killed Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi seemed oblivious to the praise that President Donald Trump heaped on him Monday at the White House.

Conan, a Belgian Malinois, seemed much more interested in the head scratches from Mike Pence, repeatedly looking up at the vice-president in search of more attention.

Trump used a slew of adjectives to describe Conan, who was injured when he was exposed to electric wires in the late October raid while chasing al-Baghdadi at the terrorist’s compound in northwest Syria. “Incredible.” “Brilliant.” “Smart.” “Ultimate fighter.” “Very special.” “Tough cookie.”

“So this is Conan,” Trump said. “Right now, probably the world’s most famous dog.”

Trump said he bestowed a medal on the dog and presented him with a plaque. First lady Melania Trump stood a few feet away.

The president said initially Conan was going to be muzzled for the appearance, but he thought that would put the dog in attack mode.

“He’s not in a bad mood today,” Trump told dozens of reporters and TV crews gathered in the Rose Garden. “So, you’re safe.”

Trump said he asked members of the U.S. special forces who met with him that day if an unarmed man would stand a chance against Conan. He said the special forces, who could not appear in public, told him “No.”

The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A conceptual image of a multi-family housing development envisioned by Abugov Kaspar Architects to go on a lot in Castle Mountain in Fernie. (Image courtesy of City of Fernie)
City defers zoning decision

A zoning change would permit a development with 15 percent rental tenure residences in Castle Mountain

Rob and Jennifer King run Sasquatch Cyclery out of their garage. (Soranne Floarea/ The Free Press)
‘Hop on it now’: Parts crunch hits cycling

New bikes are hard to get and used bikes are selling at a premium this year

Michel-Natal-Sparwood Heritage Society runs a museum that was established to display the heritage of the "no-longer towns" of Michel and Natal, and the Elk Valley Area. Photo Submitted/Monica Beranek, Artifact Curator
Sparwood Museum requests a leg up to stay open full-time

The museum is volunteer-run, but needs a full-time employee to be able to snag much-needed grants

Elvira D’Angelo, 92, waits to receive her COVID-19 vaccination shot at a clinic in Montreal, Sunday, March 7, 2021, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
110 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

Provincial health officers announced 1,005 new cases throughout B.C.

It costs as little as $7 to charge an EV at home. (Scott Tibballs / The Free Press)
Electric Vehicles a rare sight (in the Kootenays), but change on the way

Electric pickups will increase the appeal of zero-emission vehicles in years to come according to Blair Qualey of the New Car Dealers Association

In this image from NASA, NASA’s experimental Mars helicopter Ingenuity lands on the surface of Mars Monday, April 19, 2021. The little 4-pound helicopter rose from the dusty red surface into the thin Martian air Monday, achieving the first powered, controlled flight on another planet. (NASA via AP)
VIDEO: NASA’s Mars helicopter takes flight, 1st for another planet

The $85 million helicopter demo was considered high risk, yet high reward

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains. (Hansard TV)
B.C. moves to protect employee pay for COVID-19 vaccination

Most won’t need to take time off work, labour minister says

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

New figures show Canadian housing prices outpacing those in other developed countries. (Black Press Media file photo)
Canadian housing prices fastest rising in the world

Relative to 2000, housing prices have risen by a factor of more than 2.5

Russ Ball (left) and some of the team show off the specimen after they were able to remove it Friday. Photo supplied
80-million-year-old turtle find on B.C. river exciting fossil hunters

Remains of two-foot creature of undetermined species will now make its home at the Royal BC Museum

Joudelie King wants to get out and live life to the fullest, but there are places she can’t go because they don’t meet her accessibility needs. (submitted photo)
New online tool provides accessibility map for people with disabilities

The myCommunity BC map provides accessibility info for nearly 1,000 locations in the province

British Columbia’s provincial flag flies in Ottawa, Friday July 3, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Wildfire fanned by winds near Merritt prompts evacuation alert

BC Wildfire Service says the suspected human-caused blaze was fanned by winds

The Rogers logo is photographed in Toronto on Monday, September 30, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tijana Martin
Rogers investigating after wireless customers complain of widespread outage

According to Down Detector, problems are being reported in most major Canadian cities

Most Read