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But despite the planning, the briefing and other preparations the Marines had dutifully carried out, their mission was canceled the next day, with “hurry up and wait” echoing in their heads.

Gen. Shujaee’s boss — Maj. Gen. Sayed Malook, commander of the Afghan army’s 215th Corps — decided to visit troops at Camp Garmsir, an Afghan base adjacent to Camp Dwyer. Gen. Shujaee would greet his boss at the camp, and Col. Treglia and his men would stay at Dwyer.

The canceled mission is emblematic of the Marines’ new role in southwest Afghanistan: Afghan forces now take the lead in operations in the southern part of Helmand and in 80 percent of central Helmand.

“Most of the time, we only hear about missions from the Afghans after they’re done,” Col. Treglia said.

Tomorrow: Drawing down and “green on blue” attacks