now they travel only to the Damascus railway and then return. Shiro is the home of many Turks, who profit from traders, or who have retired from posts of power and profit at Constantinople. It is not a large town, but more a settlement of wealthy aghas.
We camped outside this little city. Early the next morning military officers came out. Kerim Bey met them, and there was a short conference. Then the Kurds began to gather the prettiest girls. They tore them from their relatives and half dragged, half carried them to where guards were placed to take charge of them.
All morning the Kurds carried young women away until more than a hundred had been accepted by the officer from the city. Then the apostates were ordered to join these weeping girls, and we were marched into the town.
The narrow streets were crowded with Turks and Arabs. They hooted at us, and made cruel jests as we passed. Among the apostates were many old women, whose daughters had sworn to be Mohammedans to save them. When the crowds saw these they laughed with ridicule. Once the citizens swooped down upon the party and, unhindered by our guards, seized four of the older women, stripped off their clothing and carried them away on their shoulders, shouting in great glee. We never heard what became