Trump has fully embraced QAnon - here's how it happened

Trump has fully embraced QAnon - here's how it happened

Related video: Trump campaign video appears to use QAnon theme song

Donald Trump

Back in 2018, President Trump’s administration was a little more ambiguous over whether it supported QAnon – the baseless far-right conspiracy theory which claims the controversial Republican is at war with Satan-worshipping paedophiles in America’s elite.

Despite reports of a QAnon sign being held by a supporter in the crowd of Mr Trump’s Florida rally in July that year, then-press secretary Sarah Sanders told a White House briefing: “The president condemns and denounces any group that would incite violence against another individual, and certainly doesn’t support groups that would promote that type of behaviour.

“We’ve been clear about that a number of times since the beginning of the administration.”

Only a couple of weeks after this was it revealed that Mr Trump had posed for an Oval Office photograph with QAnon backer and YouTube conspiracy theorist Lionel Lebron.

In 2019, the FBI declared QAnon a domestic terrorism threat – the same year a Women for Trump ad appeared to feature the ‘Q’ symbol (referencing the conspiracy theory’s ‘leader’) and the Republican retweeted several tweets from QAnon supporters back when he had a Twitter account.

Now he’s out of office, however, there’s talk of the former Apprentice star more openly embracing the QAnon conspiracy theory.

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Here are the warning signs:

1. He’s sharing more overt QAnon memes

As mentioned above, when he was active on Twitter, Mr Trump shared tweets from accounts supportive of the conspiracy, but now – over on his own social media platform Truth Social - the messages themselves are as clear as day in referencing QAnon slogans and lore.

On Tuesday this week, the businessman ‘ReTruthed’ an image of him complete with a ‘Q’ pin (‘Q’ is the anonymous ‘leader’ of the group), the initialism “Wwg1wga” and the catchphrase, “The storm is coming”.

‘Wwg1wga’ stands for ‘where we go one, we go all’, while “the storm” is a scenario where Trump regains power, his opponents are tried and then potentially executed on live television.

It’s easy to see why the FBI considers this conspiracy theory to be terrorist in nature.

2. He’s reportedly playing QAnon songs at his rallies now

According to The New York Times, Mr Trump’s choice of music at his ‘Save America’ rally in Ohio on Saturday included a track similar to the QAnon theme song called ‘Wwg1wga’.

So much for the god-awful dancing to “YMCA”…

3. He didn’t appear to question his supporters doing a ‘QAnon salute’

At the same Ohio rally at the weekend, footage showed supporters in the crowd raising their right arms in the air, with their index finger pointing upwards – a gesture which has already sparked comparisons to the Nazi salute.

Outlets have noted that the raised index finger to create a ‘one’ is a possible reference to the ‘one’ in the aforementioned “where we go one, we go all”.

Needless to say a prominent political figure – who continues to flirt with a 2024 presidential campaign – aligning more closely with a violent far-right conspiracy theory should horrify every single one of us.

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