Caleb Stephen
Caleb Stephen

I support Melbourne Jewish gym owner Avi Yemini


Yesterday, the Daily Mail published a story about how Avi Yemini, a Jewish gym owner in Melbourne, Australia, received a death threat from an abusive, anti-Semitic caller to his business called “IDF Training.”

Not only is Avi a gym owner, he’s also an Israeli army veteran and prominent Jewish community member. His verified Facebook page says it all.

I’m one of Avi’s 29,600 + Facebook fans and, like many of them, I sat there with my blood boiling as I watched his Facebook Live video detailing the despicable hate speech crime.

The recorded call, which began like any other normal call, was placed at IDF Training’s offsite reception phone line. The caller exchanged pleasantries with the male call-taker who offered to pass a message to Avi.

That’s when things went south.

‘Is he the ex-IDF bloke?’ the anonymous caller asked, to which the jovial call centre operator replied, ‘yeah 100 percent’.

‘So he knows how to shoot Palestinians?’ the caller asks.

‘I’m not too sure to be honest with you’, the operator replied before the caller launched into an anti-Semitic tirade.

‘He does, the f**kin’ c**kscuker. Well I wanna learn how to shoot, because I wanna shoot him in the f**kin’ head. He’s a f**kin’ c**ksuckin’ Zionist. Why are you even working there mate?’

The operator repeated that he was just the offsite reception, but was quickly cut off.

‘You tell Avi to get the f**k out of the country, the f**kin’ c**ksucking f**kin’ Jew,’ the caller shouted before hanging up.

As of writing, Avi said he did not know who the man on the line was, but understands the call originated from Deer Park, a predominantly Muslim suburb of Melbourne — which really does explain a lot.

Avi told the Daily Mail that he’s been on the receiving end of threats and anti-Semitic activities before but this incident is the “worst ever.”

“I am outspoken and criticize aspects of Islam… which is often met with threats, but it won’t stop me,” he said.

Avi noted in his Facebook Live video that although he is a Jew, he is also willing to challenge some aspects of Zionism and is very much willing to participate in open discussion… even with Muslims.

I’m a mixed Australian citizen, and I have Jewish blood and I for one am disgusted at this deplorable anti-Semitic tirade. Avi is welcome in this country. In fact, everybody who is willing to assimilate and work toward the greater good of our country is welcome here. I welcome free speech and the ability to express the opinions and beliefs one espouses so long as it doesn’t go against the Judaeo-Christian foundations that gave our nation everything we deem good, morally right and wholesome. I welcome principled, honest discussion.

I see a lot of anti-Semitic hate speech in my daily work as a journalist. It’s shocking, it’s plain unacceptable, and it must come to an end. Contrary to popular belief, Jews are not the provocateurs, aggressors and mass murderers. Nonetheless, we’re hounded with abuse and hunted down for nothing more than simply existing on this planet. Jews are the first people to be forgiving and ready to extend an olive branch, so there’s no reason for the hate.  6 million of our ancestors were killed in ovens and gas chambers during Hitler’s brutal regime. If anything, it’s not the Muslims that are the underdogs, it’s the Jews.

Anyone who has read my writings on various international outlets would know that I’m very much opposed to the vile ideology of Islam. While I do criticize Islam because it’s a barbarous belief system, I’m not against Muslims as people and neither is Avi. I would be more than willing to stand up for a Muslim, Jew or anybody else any day if they were being attacked with obscenities and violence because quite frankly it’s just unacceptable.

As of writing, Victoria Police are investigating the death threat. Let’s hope they find this cowardly individual so his vile intentions can be exposed to the world.


About the Author
A widely-published freelance journalist writing from Sydney, Australia.
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