I’m afraid the title pretty much says it all. In the past, Libyan “handlers” for the press have been clearly guilty of staging alleged collateral damage scenes, and even moving bodies from a morgue to make it look like NATO has been killing civilians on a massive scale, but this time it appears the story is confirmed.

NATO said Sunday one of its airstrikes in the Libyan capital, Tripoli, went astray and may have killed civilians. The statement came after the Libyan government accused the alliance of killing nine civilians in an airstrike on a residential neighborhood in the capital early Sunday.

The military alliance said the errant strike early Sunday may have been due to “a weapons system failure.”

A NATO commander says the alliance “regrets the loss of innocent civilian lives and takes great care in conducting strikes.”

The casualties are likely to provide supporters of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi’s regime a fresh rallying point against the international intervention in Libya’s civil war.

While regrettable, this happens in war time limited, scope limited, kinetic military actions. Initial reports don’t even indicate which country’s plane from the NATO forces fired the shot, but they were apparently aiming for a ground based missile site and experienced a malfunction.

The action in Libya should, by this point, have been clearly defined as a civil war, plain and simple. And each week’s news makes it appear more and more that the battle has settled into a protracted stalemate, with the rebels of various flavors controlling roughly 1/3 of the country, based in Benghazi, and the government controlling the rest. And maybe it’s just me, but Gaddafi doesn’t look any closer to folding up his tent and leaving now than he did in the beginning.

This particular KMA, as I recall, was scheduled to last for “days, not weeks or months.” And technically I suppose that’s true. It has lasted for days… roughly 100 of them at last count. But hey… at least we’re not technically involved in “hostilities” over there, so that should count for something.