Yes. They fought huge wars, killed millions of people, destroyed many historic building and institutions and then for a relatively small sacrifice of blood and treasure gained a huge economic advantage. Was it planned? I think not. Was it opportunistic? Hell yes.
METAMIA is a free database of analogy and metaphor. Anyone can contribute or search. The subject matter can be anything. Science is popular, but poetry is encouraged. The goal is to integrate our fluid muses with the stark literalism of a relational database. Metamia is like a girdle for your muses, a cognitive girdle.