Imperialism smashes different cultures into each other. As such it is a rude course of conduct and engages in an often violent process.
Insofar as empire wrestles with how one (dominant) culture needs to interact with another (subjugated) culture, the story of the Jewish people is also the story of empire. When a people is exiled into the corpus of another people we get the problems of empire inserted into the domestic politics of the host culture. Hosting an exiled people is tantamount to introducing imperial forces into the inner workings of the host culture's politics.
It is ironic that Israel dealt with imperial politics domestically in the accepting of the covenant. When Israel moves into exile it takes that internal imperial politics and transplants it into the political/economy of the host culture. Israel forces domestic imperialism into every situation in which it finds itself. When Israel is sovereign the imperial ruler is YHWH; when Israel is in exile the imperial ruler is the host culture's state.
Covenantal politics manifests as domestic imperialism.