1983 Panel 5 of 9
Aug 29 1983 - Under international pressure, the Israeli army began their withdrawal. Early in the morning Druze militia began attacking Marine positions with rockets, mortars, and small arms fire. In one of these series of attacks a mortar hit a tent occupied by Marines and killed 2nd Lt. Donald Losey killing him instantly and SSgt Alexander Ortega later succumbed to his injuries. 10 other Marines from Alpha Company, 3rd Platoon were wounded in these attacks. The last three days of August were marked by sporadic and occasional heavy firefights and artillery.
Sept 5 1983 - All Marine positions had been under daily heavy and escalating attacks from mortar, rocket, and small arms fire since the Israeli army departure. In the early morning between 0345 and 0530, 21 rockets had impacted killing, LCpl Randy Clark and Cpl Pedro Valle, 2 other Marines from Alpha Company were wounded. Marines replied with 155mm IL rounds. By 1600 on 6 Sept more than 120 rounds of artillery, mortar and rocket fire had exploded in and around the BIA wounding another Marine. Sept.6-7 the French suffered 1 KIA and 3 wounded. On Sept. 7 at 1815 more incoming rounds resulted in the wounding of a Marine with MSSG.
Sept 22 1983 - The USS New Jersey fires its sixteen inch guns into the Shouf mountains in support of the LAF as they try to retake key positions to stop attacks on Beirut suburbs and the Marines.
The US support for the LAF during this assault was seen by the Muslim militia allies, Iran and Syria, as a turning point in the US role. While previous attacks on the Marines had been met with a direct response to neutralize the threat, the September 22nd action was a show of force and an viewed as an offensive move by the US.