AMMAN – In the coming weeks, between 10,000 and 20,000 men in southern Syria will get their last month’s pay from the US government.

The men are part of the Southern Front, a loose collaboration of dozens of anti-Assad, Western-vetted militias operating in Daraa and Quneitra provinces. For close to four years, they have been paid, armed and directed by the Military Operations Command, or MOC – a US-led support mechanism and weapons bridge operating out of Amman.

But before the month is out, that support and oversight will end as the US government, under a directive from President Donald Trump, ceases support for Syria’s anti-Assad rebels.

The end of the status quo