Michael Mulroy, the deputy assistant secretary of defense for the Middle East highlighted the work of another coalition partner in Syria, the Maghawir al-Thawra, a force comprising Arab tribal members that continues to conduct daily patrols in the 34-mile deconfliction zone around the Tanf garrison in the south.
“The priority now is to ensure U.S. and coalition investments in the D-ISIS fight outlive the warfighting of the last five years,” Mulroy said, referring to the fight to destroy the Islamic State.”
The American forces use the remote al-Tanf outpost to train Syrian opposition fighters known as Maghawir al Thawra, or MaT, formerly the Free Syrian Army.
The MaT has roughly 300 soldiers working out of Al Tanf, conducting patrols in the region outside the base’s walls as part of the effort to drive out ISIS. U.S. forces, with the aid of Syrian opposition fighters, have driven ISIS out of an area that stretches roughly 35 miles from the Jordanian border in what is known as a “deconfliction zone.”
The Euphrates River, which runs across the city of Deir el-Zour, acted as a dividing line between the two sides, and was considered part of the deconfliction zone between the U.S.-led coalition and Russia, intended to separate their areas of operation in Syria and prevent inadvertent clashes.