Washington | Donald Trump is embroiled in legal cases as he plots a new race for the White House in 2024, breathing new life into the QAnon conspiracy movement that he himself is an icon of.
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The anonymous founder of the far-right ‘Q’ fog may have disappeared, the former Republican president showing the movement remains strong during a recent campaign rally in Ohio, rowing behind him.
Supporters of Donald Trump were filmed ceremonially raising their arms with index fingers outstretched as Trump finished his speech to the sound of a piece of electronic music dubbed “Where from we go, we all go” by Media Matters, a progressive research center , sometimes referred to in English by the initials WWG1WGA, the anthem of QAnon.
Donald Trump previously used this track on August 9 in a video protesting the FBI’s search of his Florida home, as well as several times, which was noticed by QAnon supporters on social media. .
Donald Trump is also increasingly repeating QAnon’s ideas on his social network Truth Social. On September 13, he shared an edited photo of himself with a huge Q on his lapel.
The QAnon Nebula initially theorized that Joe Biden and the Democrats were part of a global Satanist and pedophile conspiracy. Among his followers was the “shaman” Jacob Chansley, who entered the Capitol shirtless on January 6, 2021, armed with a spear and wearing bison horns.
However, according to experts, the conspiracy movement is now adopting more “Trumpist” theories such as denial of Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election or the term “deep state” often used by Donald Trump to denounce officials working on it to undermine the authority of the President.
For Rachel Goldwasser, a right-wing extremist at the Southern Poverty Law Center, it’s now “difficult to distinguish between QAnon and Donald Trump’s MAGA (Make America great again) movement.”
Trump “hero” of the conspiracies
The billionaire is now “a kind of hero of the conspiracy theory,” she explains.
Founded in the United States in 2017, the QAnon movement takes its name from enigmatic messages posted by a certain “Q,” who is said to be a senior American official close to former US President Donald Trump.
Over the years, these theories have won over more and more Americans, and the FBI is monitoring this far-right group, which is considered potentially dangerous.
Many QAnon activists have attended Donald Trump campaign rallies wearing QAnon banners or T-shirts with a capital Q. Trump has never officially endorsed them, but has never distanced himself from them.
After his electoral defeat and especially after the attack on the Capitol on January 6th, the conspiracy movement went out of steam. The “Q” posts stopped and someone linked to the website where they appeared urged his followers to accept Joe Biden’s win.
Forced out of the major social networks, QAnon followers turned to Telegram and then, when it launched in February 2022, to Truth Social.
The fog, which has largely been reduced, refocuses on the alleged electoral fraud that led to Donald Trump’s defeat, amid impetus from several influencers who have organized rallies on the issue.
John Sabal, known as “QAnon John”, has therefore organized a large meeting in Dallas in 2021 and is planning another one in November.
Former General Michael Flynn, who was Donald Trump’s national security adviser, criss-crosses the United States promoting the same theories. Without overtly mentioning QAnon, he uses the same terminology as the far-right movement when proclaiming that “the storm is brewing.”
Footage, shot at a fundraiser in California on September 18, shows Mr Flynn and others listening to a woman sing ‘Where one of us goes, we all go’.
Pointing a finger in the sky hasn’t been a gesture previously associated with QAnon, but the episode has fueled many fears: images of Trump supporters with their arms raised have notably been compared to the Nazi salute.