On “Fox & Friends” Monday, retired Lt. Col Daniel Gade directly addressed the president and offered up his own Purple Heart for the beloved canine.
“Look, these dogs are heroic. The president’s instincts are right and right on the Purple Heart medal it says, ‘The President of the United States,’” Gade explained, rejecting the Pentagon's policy on the matter.
The edited photo of Conan, named after comedian and talk show host Conan O'Brien, shows Trump awarding the military pooch a medal. Trump dubbed it a "very cute recreation," but said the "'live version of Conan" will be visiting Washington, D.C., soon. Trump has been mocked for editing the picture.
Conan was hurt during the mission after being exposed to live electrical wires while pursing Baghdadi through a tunnel underneath a compound in northwestern Syria, Gen. Frank McKenzie, who leads U.S. Central Command, said Wednesday. The dog, who has worked with special operations forces for four years and taken part in about 50 missions, has since returned to active duty.
“If the Pentagon says that he can’t do it, guess what, he’s the president and I think he can and should do it,” Gade said.
Fox News’ Nicole Darrah contributed to this report.