The U.S. is withdrawing its weapons support for the moderate rebel groups it previously backed in northern Syria after they suffered major defeats in Idlib province last week at the hands of an al Qaeda affiliate. Washington is searching for new fighters to prop up, members of the Free Syrian Army said Tuesday.

Meanwhile, after more than three years of war and hundreds of thousands of people dead, President Bashar Assad, the leader that the U.S. onced vowed would fall to opposition forces, remains in power.

It seems “likely that the weapons will stop,” Mohammed Ghanem, a senior political adviser in Washington at the Syrian American Council, a grassroots organization based in Chicago, said. “The situation now in Syria … it’s not pretty to be honest with you. We don’t have high hopes.” Ghanem is part of a network of Syrian nonprofit organizations that are working to brief senior U.S. officials in Washington on the situation on the ground in Syria and that advocate for the support of the Syrian opposition. […]