Operation Frankenstein was a black ops operation conducted before the beginning of the TV series NCIS which focused on training and creating "super assassins".
Op Frankentein was an updated version of cold war memorandum taking candidates from the US armed forces.
The objective of the op was to push candidates to their limit. It began with written examinations and psychological profiles and ending with a physical test in which candidates were described as being pushed to the point of exhaustion in the most extreme circumstances.
The idea of this is so that the successful candidate could carry out operations in the worst of conditions and still survive. The CIA considered this a way of increasing the amount of assassins they need for wet-work by using the best of the armed forces.
Unfortunately, the operation did not go as well as expected as Lt. Jonas Cobb who had displayed potential was left traumatized after performing his first killing and as a result of never fully recovering from the psychological trauma of taking a life, Cobb went completely insane, fled the program, went off grid and began his killing spree under the alias, "the Port-to-Port Killer" all with the intent of exacting his own revenge against the people responsible.
It was later revealed that Leon Vance was the mastermind of Operation Frankenstein and that it had stemmed from his days at Naval War College. Phillip Davenport, the Secretary of the Navy, had authorized the operation and CIA agent Trent Kort was the supervising training officer.
In a flashback in Pyramid (episode), Davenport and Vance had witnessed the candidates undergoing the training regime which took place under Kort's watch.
Cobb's victims were numerous Navy personnel, NCIS Agents and even Kort himself who had personally tried to stop Cobb but had failed, resulting in him losing his left eye.
Cobb eventually died in a standoff between Davenport, Vance and NCIS Special Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs.
With Cobb's death, Operation Frankenstein was finally shut down, bringing the end to an inhumane project that had been flawed from the very beginning.