Robert E. Lee knew that he had to keep the momentum of the Confederate forces moving forward, bringing the Army of Northern Virginia and the war itself north into Union territory. A decisive string of victories might embolden foreign powers to join the Confederacy's fight.
"Promise of Glory"
For Sergeant David Griffin, a "peacetime" Marine, Beirut was a chance to prove himself capable to the generation of Marines who had been blooded in the Vietnam War. For Corporal Steven Downs, Beirut was a struggle to separate the civilian from the soldier, his distrust of the politicians' decisions from the military mission. For all the Marines serving in Lebanon, it was another war in a foreign country where the enemy could be anywhere or anyone.
"A Great Story of Marines in Harm's Way"