QAnon, a growing conspiracy theory movement born on the 4Chan message boards in 2017, made an appearance at a recent President Donald Trump in Florida. The mysterious group claims to have information on opponents of the United States and Trump, similar in scope to the debunked “Pizzagate” scandal of 2016.
According to Wikipedia, QAnon is connected to Q, a person or group of individuals as suspected, who claim to have “Q Clearance,” a top-level security clearance given to employees of the Department of Energy. QAnon was first discovered in October of 2017 on 4Chan before moving to 8Chan due to the group’s suspicion they were being monitored. As it stands, whoever is connected to QAnon claims to be privy to a bevy of damaging information on so-called enemies of the state.
At the “Make America Great Again” rally in Tampa, Florida on July 31, members of the crowd were seen wearing shirts representing QAnon and were seen on camera loudly praising President Trump’s speech. This concerns some about the power QAnon possibly wields after this past June, a man was arrested after driving an armored vehicle to the Hoover Dam on a supposed mission from QAnon. Matthew P. Wright of Henderson, Nev., demanded the Justice Department released a report on FBI agents who investigated Hillary Clinton’s email server. He was told in a Q “drop” message that the released version of the report was altered.
The scope of QAnon’s influence has some concerned as it apparently pulls in a variety of conspiracy theories and so-called “breadcrumb” clues that are connected to a nefarious plot by the “deep state” to overthrow President Trump in a government coup. There was also QDrops, a smartphone app that users employed to learn more about conspiracy theories and to spread the campaign’s information network but it was removed from Apple’s App Store.
In a recent Reddit AMA featuring former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, a user asked if QAnon was a legitimate organization to which Spicer confirmed it was not.