Oh, I don't know...
I don't think we say the war with Japan started on December 12, 1937, or on April 10, 1941.
Although the attack on the Panay and the formation of Kido Butai were both war acts by Japan, almost everyone (probably even you) counts Pearl Harbor Day as the REAL beginning.
We need to place the honor of this worldwide terrorist movement where it belongs, to the US President who watched smugly, did nothing, and probably covertly aided in the ouster of the Shaw of Iran.
It should land squarely at the feet of communist Jimmy Carter.