Independent conservative U.S. Senate candidate Thomas Ravenel stepped up his criticism of incumbent “Republican” Lindsey Graham – blasting the fiscal liberal for “warmongering and fearmongering” in regard to the ongoing U.S. military intervention in Iraq.

“John McCain spouted the same nonsense in 2008,” Ravenel said. “Nobody bought it then, and nobody’s buying it now.”

Graham said this week that if America didn’t step up its military intervention in Iraq – a nation that U.S. troops occupied for eight years beginning in 2003 – he envisioned “an American city in flames.”  This obviously isn’t the first time Graham has made such statements.  Last year, he demanded an invasion of Syria – claiming that Iran would nuke the Port of Charleston if American troops didn’t intervene.

Ravenel invoked Syria in pointing out the hypocrisy of Graham’s calls for additional military strikes against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

“I’m confused by Senator Graham’s statements,” Ravenel said. “Didn’t his buddy John McCain recently pose with ISIS fighters that our government supported in Syria? How exactly does he square that? Why would we support ISIS in one country yet bomb it in another?”

Yup … good questions (see HERE and HERE ).

The 52-year-old businessman/ reality TV star has challenged McCain to debate him on foreign policy since Graham is “too afraid” to appear in a series of eleven televised town hall debates proposed by Ravenel last month.

McCain, like Graham, has not responded to the challenge.

Ravenel reiterated his debate challenge in criticizing Graham’s foreign policy, saying Graham “had time to appear on yet another insider talk show in Washington, D.C. – yet he still refuses to answer to the people by participating in the citizen-led town hall debates.”

Ravenel also asked Graham to provide South Carolinians with a cost estimate – and a body count – for achieving his vision of Iraq.

“Here’s my challenge to Lindsey Graham: Stop fearmongering using other people’s sound bites – and other people’s blood and treasure – and give us some hard numbers,” Ravenel said.  “Tell us exactly how much is it going to cost to mold Iraq into the country you want it to be?  We know trillions of dollars and thousands of lives have already been lost there in the name of ‘nation-building’ – yet the situation is worse than it’s ever been.  So tell us Senator: How many more trillions of dollars is it going to take?  How many more dead heroes?  How many more lost limbs?  How many more shattered families?  How many more PTSD victims?”

Without congressional authorization or the support of the public, U.S. president Barack Obama launched so-called “humanitarian” airstrikes in Northern Iraq last week – less than three years after the last combat troops left what he previously referred to as a “dumb war.”

“We’re leaving behind a sovereign, stable and self-reliant Iraq, with a representative government that was elected by its people,” Obama said during a speech at Fort Bragg, N.C. in December 2011.  “We’re building a new partnership between our nations.”

Oops … 

But hey, let’s bomb them some more using money we don’t have and see what happens!