August 21st, 2016
Episode 1305 of 1444 episodes
"Archaeology is supposed to be fun and interesting and apolitical and those are the reasons I love it, but none of this is now." Archaeologists like Jesse Casana have lived and worked on sites throughout Syria for years. He describes his feelings about the fate of friends and colleagues left behind. The excavation at Tell Qarqur that he oversaw before the war has now been bulldozed, but he says, "It seems like a fairly small concern compared to the human tragedy unfolding before our eyes." Tell Qarqur is not the only monument of archaeological interest that has been destroyed. The statue of an 11th Century Arabic poet, atheist and vegetarian, al-Ma'arri, was decapitated Islamic militants in 2013. And Aleppo, thought to be the oldest city in the world, is now in ruins. Its sights are remembered fondly by the people who lived there including the elegant, 1000 year old mineret of the Great Mosque destroyed in April 2013. Picture: A Syrian rebel fighter points to destruction in the Great Mosque complex, Aleppo, Credit: AFP/Getty Images
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