Saving the Middle East's Past With Twitter and Other Online Tools

Archaeologists use Facebook and YouTube, too, to document the destruction and raise awareness

Archaeologists Wield Twitter and Other Online Tools to Save the Middle East’s Past 1

Karsten Moran/The New York Times

Monica Hanna, an archaeologist who has taught at the American U. in Cairo, visited an Egyptian tomb at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in New York, in her campaign to protect the heritage of the ancient civilization from modern violence.

In 2011, after three decades of working in Syria, the archaeologist Glenn M. Schwartz was unable to return to his dig at the Bronze Age city of Umm el-Marra. The growing civil war had made work in the country impossible. 

Like many archaeologists of the Middle East, Mr. Schwartz, a professor at the Johns Hopkins University, is watching the news from the region with deep concern and, he says, a feeling of impotence. "It’s heartbreaking to see what’s happened in Syria