Former Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) says he thinks the United States used Osama bin Laden as an excuse to build up its military and invade other countries.

“They knew where Bin Laden was. I don’t think they really wanted to catch him because he was used as the excuse for us, you know, invading various countries and building up the military,” Paul said in a radio interview with Scott Horton that BuzzFeed published Wednesday.

Paul was explaining his Marque and Reprisal Act following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and suggested Congress take up a similar measure against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) instead of passing President Obama’s broader authorization for use of military force.

Paul’s bill would have authorized the president to issue letters to private individuals or groups to find and capture bin Laden and others responsible for the 9/11 attack, as well as provide a monetary bounty for their capture or information that may lead to their arrest.

Paul argued that “it’s pretty hard to declare war against ISIS” because it’s not a government.

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