The Crac des Chevaliers once held off a siege by the Muslim warrior Saladin some 900 years ago, but today bears the wounds of modern warfare: heavy artillery damaged its walls, an airstrike punctured its roof and shrapnel tore through its religious artifacts.
From its towering hilltop perch in western Syria, the world's best preserved medieval Crusader castle has fallen victim to the chaos of Syria's civil war as rebels fight to topple President Bashar Assad. The damage done to the majestic stone structure, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, shows that the warring sides will stop at nothing, including the destruction of the country's rich heritage, to hold on to power or territory. (AP)
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