For those wondering what is QAnon, and why it is so nefarious, here is an overview.
What Is QAnon: A collection of bizarre claims
QAnon is an unfounded conspiracy theory claiming that a cabal of Satan-worshiping pedophiles is running a global child sex-trafficking ring and plotting against Donald Trump.
None of those claims are based on facts. The most likely scenario is that someone decided to troll the audience on 4chan. Other trolls picked up the trail when they did find that some people believed it, and continued the trolling. It is also likely that state actors (Russia, China, ...etc.) have a role in promoting this conspiracy to sow confusion and division, specially on an election year.
Here is a primer on QAnon by the BBC, and how it is much more dangerous than a merely a bizarre conspiracy theory.
Another QAnon overview article from the BBC from August. Note that President Donald Trump as well as his son Eric Trump posted QAnon info on social media, and Vice President Mike Pence was greeted by SWAT team personnel who wore the QAnon patch.
One bizarre claim is that Hollywood and Democrat elites harvest a psychedelic drug called Adrenochrome from the fear of children! It is almost the plot of Disney/Pixar's Monsters Inc movie.
QAnon Possibly Influencing Voting in 2020
Considerable Support Among Republicans
If you think that all this is just on the fringe, and has not real effect, then read this quote from the article and think again:
On Facebook, the biggest QAnon groups have generated 44 million comments, shares and likes. By comparison, that's about two-thirds the number of reactions generated by Black Lives Matter groups - a movement that has received a huge worldwide wave of media attention.
One poll showed that a staggering one third of Republicans believe QAnon theory of deep state paedophile cannibals is 'mostly true'.
QAnon Supports Among Republican Candidates
And you also have this troubling quote too:
A number of Republican candidates on the ballot in November have expressed sympathy for or even outright belief in QAnon ideas.
These include Marjorie Taylor Greene in Georgie.
And these are not lone wolf candidates, they have the support of Republican officials. That is despite a conservative commentator saying: "she is bat-shit crazy ... but she is going to Congress".
QAnon Merging Into COVID-19 Conspiracies
You also have COVID-19 conspiracy theories merging with QAnon.
Even though many adherents don't believe the "satanic pedophile elite" part, they do buy into the rest of the claims: the deep state, the shadow government within the government trying to undermine Trump, and so on ... Though the idea was not invented within QAnon, they have helped spread it far and wide.
Citigroup Tech Executive Facilitating Spread
Active members facilitating and spreading this ideology include an executive at Citigroup.
And when Facebook and Twitter banned them from their sites, that was immediately taken as proof that the conspiracy must be real ...
Former Vatican Ambassador Promotes Conspiracy
And a former Vatican Ambassador, Archbishop Vigano, sends a letter to Turmp saying that it is A global conspiracy against God and humanity, and attacking its usual villains, from the ominous "global elite" to Bill Gates and "the mainstream media"!
Panel Discussion On QAnon
A panel discussion on How Dangerous Are Conspiracy Theories, with a focus on QAnon, including a sociologist, and an investigative journalist, at Deutsche Welle.