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'So brilliant, so smart': Trump meets his match in hero dog wounded in Isis raid – The Guardian, Google News


Trump at the White House with Mike Pence, Conan, Conan’s handler, and Melania Trump. The president predicted Conan would not retire yet, as she was in her ‘prime time’.

Donald Trump at the White House with Mike Pence, Conan, Conan’s handler, and Melania Trump. The president predicted Conan would not retire yet, as she was in her ‘prime time’. Photograph: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Donald Trump conquered his apparent dislike of dogs on Monday for an appearance in the White House Rose Garden with Conan, theBelgian Malinoiswhich participated in the special forces raid in Syria that resulted in the death of Isis leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi.

According to the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, Conan was “slightly wounded” when Baghdadi killed himself with an explosive in his Syrian compound. On Monday, introducing “probably the world’s most famous dog”, Trump said he had given Conan a plaque andcalled the canine commando“so brilliant, so smart

According to the White House pool report, Trump also “repeatedly praised Conan’s performance and described the Belgian Malinois breed as the ‘ultimate’ at fighting and drug-sniffing”, but did not “directly answer a question… about whether he would

The president predicted Conan would not retire yet, as the dog was in “prime time”. Trump also warned reporters – a favorite target for threats and abuse – that Conan was trained to attack people if they opened their mouths.

Vice-President Mike Pence said Trumpalso met some of the special forces officers involved in the Baghdadi raid. Their identities will remain secret, per common practice regarding such units as Delta Force, the US army unit involved.

If Conan does return to active duty,the military may need to choose a pseudonym. Almost a month before the event at the White House, Trumpblew the dog’s cover(on Twitter) .

Trump’s praise for Conan has excited widespread comment, given his habit of referring to dogs in pejorative fashion.

The president’s claims about what he heard of Baghdadi’s “whimpering, screaming, and crying” may have been questioned, but Trump insisted that the Isis leader “ (died like a dog) ”. He also called Baghdadi and other Isis figures “very frightened puppies”.

He hasregularly claimedto have fired people “like a dog”, notoriouslysayingof former aide Omarosa Manigault Newman: “Good work by General Kelly for quickly firing that dog!” He has also accused political rivalMitt Romneyof choking “like a dog” and saidTed Cruz“lies like a dog”.

The trait was visible before Trump ran for president. In (April) , he called author and web mogul Arianna Huffington “a dog who wrongfully comments

He has also compared himself to a dog. In the infamous “Grab ’em by the pussy”tape released shortly before the 2016 election , Trump could be heard to describe an unsuccessful attempt to seduce a married woman.

“I moved on her like a bitch,” he said.

Back in the Rose Garden, Conan seemed unmoved by all the fuss despite, as the pool report pointed out, the absence of a familiar handler who “participated in the Baghdadi raid and cannot appear publicly”.

Then came surprising news. Though “the president used male pronouns to identify the dog during the earlier event”, the pool report said, “a White House official confirmed… on background that Conan the dog is female”.

“Your pooler retracts the earlier comment that Conan was a very good boy,” the report read. “Conan is apparently a very good girl. Good girl Conan. ”

And a couple of hours later another, hopefully final, twist. The White House pointed out that Conan was, after all, a male. This prompted more jokes on Twitter and the pool report to note that “Conan is a good boy again” and then settle for: “Conan is a good dog.”

Kathryn Watson(@ kathrynw5)

And there’s the updated pool note:pic.twitter.com/Q5RNihJp6X

(November) , 2019

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