The US continues to “disaggregate” the Jaish al-Mahdi. The first step was to separate JAM from the civilian population and other Shia political parties, like SIIC. The second step is to disaggregate JAM itself.
The US is willing to work with the “Noble” Mahdi Militia which is directly under al-Sadr’s control. Simultaneously, the US can target the “criminals” and “Special Groups” – JAM cells which work for Iran. This also leads the US to uncover Iranian Quds Forces and intelligence agents in Iraq. al-Sadr pretends to be an Iraqi Nationalist, so it is difficult for him to protest against US action against Iranian forces. This keeps the entire JAM from being captured by Iran into an Iraqi version of Lebanese Hezbollah.
Sadr suspended JAM activities for 6 months following the outbreak of violence in Karbala. The fight between the Badr Brigades and the JAM embarrassed al-Sadr. It tarnished an event at the holy city and most Iraqis would hold the JAM radicals accountable.