Dec. 7 has never been an ordinary day for Takeo Iguchi. On that day 73 years ago, when Imperial Japanese Navy warplanes attacked Pearl Harbor, he was in Washington, the 11-year-old son of Sadao Iguchi, counselor at the Japanese Embassy there.

Takeo Iguchi, himself a former ambassador to New Zealand and a professor emeritus at Shobi University, has devoted his research to reversing a prevalent view in Japan that it was due to the embassy’s neglect that Japan’s final memorandum was handed to U.S. Secretary of State Cordell Hull at 2:20 p.m. on Dec. 7, 1941, Washington time — one hour after the start of the attack — and thus giving Japan the disgrace of launching a “sneak attack.”

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