March 2007

Ask Admiral Growler Continued
by Mike filsinger

David Cooke asks: Situation: A ship suspects captor mines are nearby. It launches a wild weasel, and takes no voiding actions. The ship comes within trigger range of a previously undetected captor mine, and the captor launches a seeking weapon.

Question: does the captor mine's seeking weapon go after the wild weasel or the ship?

Rule (J3.201) states that seeking weapons launched ". . . while an undestroyed and unvoided WW is on the map will not accept the ship as a target, but instead follow the WW."

Rule (J3.26) states "Note that the wild weasel is not treated in any way as if it were the unit it was launched from for purposes of mine triggering, only as the size class, i.e., weasels launched from minesweepers do not have the benefit of (M2.45)."

Clearly, if the ship weasels after the mine launches its seeking weapon, it will follow the wild weasel. Will this also be true if the wild weasel was already active before the captor was triggered?

I am not sure if this is what (J3.26) is meant to address, or if they had another scenario in mind with that rule.

ANSWER: Rule (J3.201) is the operative rule. While the seeking weapon can be launched at a ship protected by a wild weasel, it will from the moment of launch accept the weasel as its target. Note that a seeking weapon could also be launched specifically at the weasel, and if the weasel were then to be voided, such a seeking weapon would continue to pursue the weasel rather than diverting to the formerly protected ship.