Japan likewise put her hopes of victory on a different basis from that prevalent in the United States. (...) Even when she was winning, her civilian statesmen, her High Command, and her soldiers repeated that this was no contest between armaments; it was pitting of our faith in things against their faith in spirit.
In most collectivist cultures, direct confrontation of another person is considered rude and undesirable. The word is seldom used, because saying no is a confrontation; you may be right and we will think about it are examples of polite ways of turning down a request. In the same vein, the word yes should not necessarily be inferred as an approval, since it is used to maintain the line of communication: yes, I heard you is the meaning it has in Japan.