A national defense analyst is convinced that the United States will be on its own in coming months as it deals with North Korea and its progressing missile program.
"We are not going to get any help, realistically, from the Chinese or the Russians. They are just not interested in helping out," observes Bob Maginnis, a retired U.S. Army colonel now at the Family Research Council.
"The missiles that are being tested," Maginnis notes, "they're not pointed at Beijing or Moscow."
But there is one scenario that will compel the Russians and Chinese to change their minds.
"If the Japanese go nuclear," he says.
That scenario is not out of the question, he further explains, pointing out that Japanese leaders are, at the moment, debating a stronger military defense to counter North Korea's threat.
Held back by a post-World War II commitment to a pacifist nation, Japan announced in May it plans to tweak its constitution to mirror its beefed-up self-defense forces.
Meanwhile, Reuters has reported that China responded in unusually strong terms at repeated calls from the United States to put more pressure on North Korea.
After publicly stating he expected China to help, President Donald Trump has more recently stated that China, despite its close economic and diplomatic ties to Pyongyang, is not doing enough to rein in North Korea.
Russia, meanwhile, which also shares a border with the reclusive regime, vetoed a UN resolution that sought to punish North Korea.
If both China and Russia witnessed a massive flood of North Korean refugees fleeing for safety, then they would be concerned about North Korea, says Maginnis. At the moment, he says, they are watching the United States go it alone.