I have heard that its prohibited to hurt women, children and those who are not fighting you, during wars. But we still hear that women were taken as slaves during war, and they were distributed as part of booty. How is that possible ?
There is a hadith that says not to kill Woman, Children or elderly the only hadith that says so which is of a weak narration:
The Prophet (ﷺ) said: Go in Allah's name, trusting in Allah, and adhering to the religion of Allah's Apostle. Do not kill a decrepit old man, or a young infant, or a child, or a woman; do not be dishonest about booty, but collect your spoils, do right and act well, for Allah loves those who do well.
However, the only restrictions there are as stated by many hadiths are:
- Do not embezzle the spoils
- Do not break your pledge
- Do not mutilate dead bodies
- Do not kill the children
So 2 points. First children are the only ones that you are not allowed to kill. The second, you still can take slaves from Children, women and men as allowed by the Quran and Sunnah. Physical harm does not have nothing to do with taking slaves in Islam.
it is forbidden to kill women, children and elderly and there's many authentic hadiths in bukhari and muslim about this, like the one from ibn umar. the above answer is wrong to say it's allowed to kill them. Slaves were taken only if the enemy soldiers brought their families with them to war, in that case the muslims took them in like part of their family because they cant just leave them on the street http://www.answering-christianity.com/karim/no_killing_of_civilians.htm