On hardcore history Dan Carlin talks about how Rome is a city driven by ambitious men. Men who don’t want to be rich for the sake of comfort, but want to be powerful and praised.
Ambition can drive people to extremes.
While most empires are concerned about their safety, Roman generals quarrel about who will get the glory for the next war victory.
They have no concern over if they will win or lose. The only question is “when we win, who gets the glory?”
This leads Sulla to direct his army of 30,000 to march on Rome because Marius is poised to be the leading general in a battle in the east.
It wasn’t about winning the war and defending Rome. It was just a question of who got the glory. When you don’t have to fight to survive, you fight over strange things.