US media is reporting on how the conspiracy theory known as QAnon helped to influence the violent events at the US Capitol building last week. According to The Washington Post report:
January 13, 2021 The siege on the U.S. Capitol played out as a QAnon fantasy made real: The faithful rose up in their thousands, summoned to Washington by their leader, President Trump. They seized the people’s house as politicians cowered under desks. Hordes wearing T‑shirts emblazoned with the “Q” symbol and toting Trump flags closed in to deliver justice, armed with zip-tie handcuffs and rope and guns. The “#Storm” envisioned on far-right message boards had arrived. And two women who had died in the rampage — both QAnon devotees — had become what some were calling the first martyrs of the cause. The siege ended with police retaking the Capitol and Trump being rebuked and losing his Twitter account. But the failed insurrection illustrated how the paranoid conspiracy theory QAnon has radicalized Americans, reshaped the Republican Party and gained a forceful grip on right-wing belief.Born in the Internet’s fever swamps, QAnon played an unmistakable role in energizing rioters during the real-world attack on Jan. 6. A man in a “Q” T‑shirt led the breach of the Senate, while a shirtless, fur-clad believer known as the “Q Shaman” posed for photographers in the Senate chamber. Twitter later purged more than 70,000 accounts associated with the conspiracy theory, in an acknowledgment of the online potency of QAnon.
Read the rest here.
The Global Influence Operations Report (GIOR) reported earlier this week that Twitter had removed the accounts of high-profile supporters of President Trump who promoted the QAnon conspiracy theory. We reported earlier this month on the influence of QAnon on the Republican Party and that Marjorie Taylor Greene, a newly elected member of the US House of Representatives, is a supporter of QAnon.
We reported in October that Russia’s Internet Research Agency troll farm was attempting to use social media accounts to boost the role of conspiracy theories promoted by QAnon.
We also reported in October that YouTube had joined Facebook and other social media companies in taking action against QAnon.