Some radical right-wing South African groups have travelled to the US in efforts to expand their organisational networks. Amid the maelstrom of footage emerging from the 6 January insurrection at the US Capitol in Washington DC, a video of a white South African rioter emerged, much to the surprise of many South African observers. In the 50-second rant, which originally aired on the pro-Trump cable channel One America News Network and went viral in South Africa, the man introduces himself as bringing a ‘message’ from his country. He goes on to shout, “for every one of you senators, and every one of you congressmen out there, we [sic] watching, we’ve had enough, OK?… don’t tell us what to do anymore… all you bunch of rhino arseholes, we’re watching you today!” The video is one piece in a long trail of evidence that connects white ethno-nationalist extremists in South Africa with QAnon conspiracists and white supremacy groups in the United States.
The South African origins of QAnon. The South African connection to the QAnon conspiracy community, described by some as a ‘cult’, has been discussed by American and South African journalists alike. In 2018, NBC news reported that one of the instigators behind the QAnon conspiracy phenomenon was a South African tech journalist and web developer named Paul Furber. According to journalists Brandy Zadrozny and Ben Collins, Furber and two other original 4Chan contributors grew the conspiracy in order to build a following for Qanon, and also for themselves. Furber reportedly confirmed these accounts to the journalists by email saying, “A bunch of us decided that the message needed to go wider so we contacted YouTubers who had been commenting on the Q drops.” Two years later, South African journalist Rebecca Davis reported that QAnon had gained numerous followers in the country, appealing to existing ethno-nationalist and Afrophobic attitudes and perspectives. Furber’s recent activity on the new radical-right social networking platform, gab, indicates that he is revising and reviving expired QAnon theories – particularly those that failed to come to fruition at the inauguration of Joe Biden on 20 January, which left many QAnon followers in disbelief and disarray. The day after President Biden’s inauguration, Furber posted a message claiming that “Trump still has the nuclear football… Real Joe is either dead or in Gitmo [Guantanamo Bay detention camp]. The LARPer [live-action role player] currently playing him was not sworn in legally by definition… Stay strong, stag vigilant, stay restrained, stay faithful”. In South Africa, the ‘deep state’ conspiracy theory manufactured by QAnon carries echoes of Apartheid-era swart gevaar (‘black danger’) and rooi gevaar (‘red danger’) mythology, used by the Afrikaner Nationalist government to create alarm about the perceived security threat of the majority Black African population, and communism, to white South Africa. These theories have been revised and updated in current QAnon conspiracies in the country, which claim that the Black-majority government is conspiring against white South Africans and the country as a whole.

via thedailyvox: The global cult of white supremacy: How the South African radical right is bolstering US extremism