The Levant - South East Asia - was the site of mineral, cultural and religious emergences. It is drained by the renowned rivers of Mesopotamia, the Euphrates and the Tigris, and also the Orontes, which flows from Lebanon across Syria to enter the Mediterranean Sea in southern Turkey.
Therefore this area holds the history of early human activity. With all these riches, archaeologically, culturally, religiously, in resources, in major water routes, why would it NOT be important?
The Levant is formed by the countries along the eastern Mediterreanean coast; modern-day Syria, Lebanon, and Israel. Today, often described just as the "Near East". Historically it has been an area of conflict partly because of it was an important trade region with ports on the Mediterranean, it was prized by a succession of Mesopotamian empires.
The Hurrian Kingdom of Mittani (c. 1475-1275 BCE) first seized the area and built the city of Washukanni . Subsequently, the Hittites took power. Their war with Egypt was unresolved as the Hittite and Egyptian forces were equal in strength. Lying between the lands of Egypt and Mesopotamia, the Levant also bordered the Mediterranean sea and the caravan routes to Asia; those seeking power needed it to ensure both the land routes and access to the sea.
More significantly still, this was the place where lay the remains of much much older cultures and the site of religious entities. Known as the Fertile Crescent, it is accepted as the area of the world where civilization began. The Bible describes the Garden of Eden as between the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers in this region. It is the promised land of Canaan. Christianity began there. Many cultures revere it and believe it to be their own.