But it was overall a jolly affair, empowering in a way because of the strong international feel. Whilst the devil had all the best tunes (until the cops confiscated the sound system), the award for presentation and PR had to go the the Turkish Marxist Leninist Communist party contingent, whose dancers, children, banners and sheer exuberance won constant media attention.
And this was against strong competition. Marchers ranged from the traditional style British unions (RMT, Amicus, T&G, and so on) to their Iraqi counterparts, with strong contingents of many displaced and harassed people such as Kurds and Chechens. There were flags from many countries, South America and Cuba being strongly represented.
So it was a (predictable) shame that the forces of law and disorder tried to bugger it up. At the rear of the march were the familiar red and black flags, the face masks and the anti-capitalist banners. Just in case you couldn't work out who they were, a solid doughnut of yellow jacketed cops surrounded them, backed up as they approached the square by two lines of mounted police and then, as they were jostled towards the National Gallery, by the Tactical Support Group.
Outnumbered about twenty to one they found themselves in an all too familiar pen, individually harassed and collectively filmed by the ever present FIT mob.
By four they were allowed to leave singly or in pairs, and are probably now being prodded and narked in the pubs of the West End.