QAnoners seek to adapt their extremist ideology for a new era

Colin Clarke, the director of policy and research at the Soufan Group, a security consulting firm, said he has seen white nationalists and neo-Nazi groups online seeking to “groom” disenchanted QAnon believers into their own hateful ideologies. The far-right movements, he noted, share what he called a “fringe fluidity” because they overlap in their ability to attract people prone to fringe beliefs about shadowy forces controlling the world.

“We’re very likely to see QAnon lead to a steppingstone of … racially and ethnically motivated violent extremists,” he said. “They’re looking at this as an opportunity to grow their movement.”

Many QAnon believers, Clarke said, have been pulled into the movement at a time of great anxiety: Trapped at home by the pandemic and worried about money and health, they’re being presented with a never-ending assortment of polarizing “propaganda” that promises easy answers to intractable fears.

With QAnon’s prophecies falling apart, Clarke worries how many will react.