Call it the biblical ‘an eye for an eye’, retaliation. The Avengers, also known as the Jewish Avengers or Nokmim, is the name given to groups of Jewish assassins whose sole responsibility was to take out the Nazi war criminals who had executed almost an entire race during the Holocaust. This was after World War II.
The Avengers traveled in groups of three or four round Europe while donning British uniforms. One of them, Meir Zorea, admitted that they only targeted people who were directly involved in the execution of the Jews. At first, the method of execution was a shot in the head, but later they changed tact and started killing the Nazis by strangling them with their own hands. Reason for this might have been to enjoy the sensation more while allowing the victim to suffer. This group would not reveal anything to the marks prior to the execution-who they were or the reason for killing them. As they put it, it was like ‘a killing of an insect’.
There was another extremist group within The Avengers that was called The Nakam Group. This consisted of about 60 Jews who arrived in Germany after the war to carry out more complicated and fatal retaliation ops. Their goal was to carry out an execution that would attract international response and send out a warning to anyone who would even think of harming the Jews again.
One of the ways they intended to do this was through a poison that they claimed was to be used on 3,000 loaves of bread for former SS guards who were currently in an American war camp called the Stalag XIII. However, the real plan was to poison the water supplies of Berlin, Munich, Hamburg, Nuremberg and Weimar. They were looking at murdering 6 million Germans, the same number of Jews the Nazis had executed. The plan was also meant to protect the American residential areas, where the Americans lived.
This plan would have gone down were it not for an incident that occurred. The individual who was to transport the poison was given false documents and he boarded a ship in the Port of Haifa. As the ship approached Toulon, France, the British discovered that Kovner’s (the courier who was head of the Nakam) papers were fake. His accomplices managed to throw the poison overboard. Kovner was later sent to an Egyptian jail and his successor, Harmatz, believed that they were sabotaged by the Zionists who were of the view that such an act would reduce the support for a Jewish state. And the Germans were saved.