Colonial Britain had a massive interest in the Kurds and Kurdistan. Their later occupation of Mesopotamia gave British political intelligence officers lots of work to do amongst the Kurdish people.
Amongst these officers was Major Ely Bannister Soane, who converted to Islam and knew Kurdish and Farsi perfectly. He travelled through Kurdistan and wrote the book To Mesopotamia and Kurdistan in Disguise that was a sympathetic testament to his support for the Kurds.
“But Mede and Persian fell again; the Persians were subdued, and the Medes, deprived of the support of these their kinsmen, retired to their fastnesses and commenced the later period of history of their race-under the name of Gordyene, or Kurd.
Xenophon found them-his Karduk-to his cost, as all who read the “Retreat of the Ten Thousand” may learn, and he found them there in Anti Taurus, or as we call it today, Hakkiari, Central Kurdistan.
When it is remembered that this part of Western Asia has been subject to the most wholesale revolution, to invasions by the armies of every nation that ever acquired fame and name in the Eastern world’s history-Assyrian, Parthian, Greek, Roman, Persian, the Arabs under Muhammad and the Mongols- the fine stability of the race stands out, for among all the people of these lands they alone have withstood every army, and retained pure their language and blood, and claim with a pride of race to which none can grudge admiration, that they are the pure Aryan, the “holders of the hills, and the possessors of the tongue.”
Ely Bannister Soane, To Mesopotamia and Kurdistan in Disguise. 1912.