[Originally published 12-17-20, updated 1-12-21.]
This is a chart developed over several months of investigation. It shows the individuals, functions and relationships of the top leadership of QAnon as currently understood.
This is not a historical review—it is only concerned with the people running QAnon now.
Update: January 12, 2021
I will write a full update soon. But the recent events at the Capitol emphasize the urgency of understanding this operation and shutting it down immediately.
Twitter has done a good job of dismantling most of the major QAnon accounts but the cult has not disappeared. It is moving into the shadows in small alt-right social media networks. In our estimation there are at least thirty million people who believe at least part of the QAnon fiction.
There is a serious danger of violence through the Inauguration and thereafter. Please consider your personal risk factors and plan accordingly.
If you are interested in helping or need help with loved ones, we are building a movement. please DM: https://twitter.com/jimstewartson?s=21
Investigation and Process
This investigation began in early August 2020 by Jim Stewartson who has joined hundreds of fellow patriots in exposing and suppressing this dangerous group. Here is an article summarizing some of our activities.
TL;DR [too long; didn't read]:
- We have collected thousands of pieces of hard evidence including emails, DMs, Discord chats and other comms between these parties.
- We have conducted an extremely thorough review of the available relevant material online, including on Tor and other dark web networks.
- We have 60+ sources with inside knowledge of this conspiracy.
- We have a live network of spotters and white hat network analysts who monitor this network for activity and have mapped its infrastructure, including its reliance on Russian servers and networks.
- We are allied with high level cult experts creating content and tools to help extract victims and inoculate the public.
- We have actively eliminated a number of dangerous accounts on Twitter that were being used to spread disinformation for QAnon.
- We have collectively written numerous articles, done thousands of tweets, hundreds of memes and hashtags, fed stories to many MSM outlets, created a documentary with Financial Times, done a TedX talk on the dangers of QAnon, and are currently cooperating with a well-know network on a QAnon documentary.
- We are cooperating with Anonymous and a large network of independent researchers. #FreeKirtaner
- We are cooperating with both counterintelligence and law enforcement.
- We are running a number of continuing operations to further infiltrate and map QAnon’s leadership.
QAnon is a dangerous mind control cult purposefully created to attack American democracy.
QAnon uses alternate reality game (ARG) mechanics, hypnosis, apophenia, phobia installation, extreme propaganda and a host of other techniques to traumatize, indoctrinate and radicalize victims.
Please see these articles for more detail.
These networks, particularly Facebook and Twitter, are in a singular quest for growth. In the process they have allowed their platforms to be weaponized against their own users. This is the fundamental flaw being exploited by QAnon.
QAnon is not organic. It is a planned psychological operation (psyop) being conducted on the American people. It is managed and executed by domestic traitors, including people in the White House up to and including POTUS, for Russian and Saudi masters.
QAnon is a serious national security risk. While we have been successful in helping to minimize organized violence so far, the risk continues to rise as the victims become more and more confused and radicalized by the news and intentional incitement by the leadership of the cult.
QAnon represents a massive propaganda network that has already been weaponized to spread disinformation at astonishing scale. As the threats to “declassify everything” continue, it is clear that QAnon will be used to pervert and amplify classified information releases, cf. Wikileaks in 2016.
Our goal is to reduce the amount of harm being done and to start the process of informing and healing victims. In our estimation there at least ten million people deeply entrenched in the cult with at least 20 million more on the fringe. The damage is not only to the victims but to their families and friends who are traumatized as well.
“Q” Historical Summary
In August 2016 Joel Zamel’s Psy-Group presented a $3M proposal to Don Jr, Kushner and others to perform a psyop using social media “characters” and “avatars” to support the election of Donald Trump.
In November 2016, convicted pedophile and Kushner ally George Nader paid Zamel $2M for undisclosed reasons. NOTE: The fiction of QAnon is based on calling all of Trump’s political enemies “pedophiles."
Throughout 2017, there were numerous LARPs (Live Action Role Playing characters) on the notorious website 4chan. These LARPs were ALL characters that were fanatic Trump supporters, extremely racist and anti-Semitic, and portrayed themselves as some sort of government operative with inside knowledge. Examples include FBIAnon, CIAAnon, Meganon, PDAnon. These can be seen as rough drafts of “Q”.
In September of 2017, Manuel Chavez aka defango, who had been working on the ARG Cicada3301 and was likely involved in these early LARPs as well, set up a Discord (chat) server. Chavez claims that “Q” was his idea and this server was set up specifically for that purpose although he has no proof of this.
Regardless, infamous trolls Microchip and Spicci were invited to the server in addition to MAGA3X operative James Brower. They were (and still are) behind some of the most powerful and vicious online harassment campaigns and controlled a vast network of weaponized trolls. They were undoubtedly well paid, probably by Psy-Group.
Psy-Group went bankrupt in 2018, but Zamel is still very much in business:
Here’s Microchip running an op from 4chan a few days before QAnon started:
And here is Spicci last week, trolling your humble correspondent after I called him out. Sorry you got suspended Spicci
Identifying these trolls, documenting who paid them and why is critical to eliminating this threat.
“Q1” Oct-Nov 2017
In October 2017, the idea for “Q Clearance Patriot” was born on Chavez’s Discord server and Microchip posted to 4chan on October 31st which came to be known as the first “Q drops.”
NOTE: There is some controversy here about the validity of the “Discord logs” that were produced showing this activity. In my opinion the logs are real but edited for appearances. Regardless, this activity is corroborated by several independent sources, as well as significant circumstantial evidence. This in no way relies on Discord logs.
Within two days, a host of right wing trolls and grifters began to amplify this LARP. Among the first was Tracy Diaz an extremist grifter who has been making a living from QAnon ever since. As the buzz grew, more people joined the server with Microchip, Spicci and Brower. This included people associated with Infowars, 8chan, Michael Flynn, Cicada3301 and Thomas Schoenberger.
Microchip claims he left after the “first 4–5 drops” which is consistent with style changes to the text.
“Q” then began posting references to movies and characters as well as pseudo-governmental predictions. These included repeated references to “Snow White” who is a Twitter LARP run by Lisa Clapier. Her job was to recruit people from Cicada3301, an ARG that was “gamejacked” (stolen) by Thomas Schoenberger that also influenced “Q”.