WINSTON Churchill was the subject of an assassination plot, proposed by a Jewish extremist who murdered a British government minister during the Second World War.
Eliyahu Bet-Zuri suggested sending agents of the Stern Gang, a Zionist paramilitary group devoted to forcing the British out of Palestine, to London to kill the prime minister, a move that would have had a devastating effect on morale while Britain was at war.
According to the MI5 files, Bet-Zuri suggested Churchill should be a target in November 1944. However, the Secret Intelligence Service did not learn of the idea until the following year, when another member of the group was arrested and spilled the beans. According to a report by Major James Robertson, from MI5's Middle East Section, the suspect revealed: "As soon as he (Bet-Zuri] returned to Stern Group headquarters, he proposed to suggest a plan for the assassination of highly placed British political personalities, including Mr Churchill, for which purpose emissaries should be sent to London."
But Maj Robertson noted: "The above information does not, as you will see, amount to very much. It does, however, I think justify us in assuming that the danger of attempts on the lives of important people here is still one which we must reckon carefully."
Bet-Zuri was hanged in 1945 for murdering Lord Moyne, the UK's Middle East minister, in Cairo in November 1944. But MI5 remained deeply concerned that Jewish terrorists might try to assassinate other leading British politicians.