Beacons and Water
In arid deserts, water is undoubtedly the most valuable resource. To win wars against the nomads, ancient soldiers had to guarantee that the main water sources remained under their control. Hence, most beacon towers were built near rivers, creeks and springs. Apart from military purposes, water was also vital to growing crops and quenching the thirst of merchants passing by. After walking a long distance through a harsh desert, travelers must have been exited to see the banners fluttering on the towers—for them, the towers were beacons of hope.