And for your Japanese friend, wasn't it a teensy bit of national arrogance in Japan??
And in China, the "Middle Kingdom" i.e, the center of the world, isn't that arrogant?
It is NATURAL that large cultures are immensely proud of themselves, what is UN-natural, and even directly false, is to say Western cultures have been the worst in this.
It should be remembered that it is only by looking beyond your navel, and picking up whatever your competitors have made that seems useful to you that you have a real chance to expand.
The Romans, and Europeans have never denied that they have used other people's inventions and technologies; the Romans prided themselves on this point.
This in contrast to some other cultures, for example..JAPAN??