Often lost in the discussion about the nuclear crisis are its regional dynamics. From 2002 China, Japan, Russia, and South Korea struggled to navigate between the unsettling belligerence of North Korea and the unilateral insistence of the United States. This book focuses on their strategic thinking over four stages of the crisis. Drawing on sources from each of the countries, it examines how the four perceived their role in the Six-Party Talks and the regional context, as they eyed each other. The book emphasizes the significance of these talks for the emerging security framework and great power cooperation in Northeast Asia.