The Israeli-linked oil tanker Mercer Street off Cape Town, South Africa in 2016 (Johan Victor/AP)

I joined a panel on TRT World’s The Newsmakers on Monday, discussing Iran, Israel, and the escalation of attacks on shipping.

The other participants are Danny Ayalon, former Israeli Ambassador to the US, and former Iranian diplomat Mehrdad Khonsari.

The discussion was prompted by last Thursday’s drone strikes, blamed by Iran, on the Israeli-linked oil Mercer Street. It considers attacks by both sides on shipping since 2019 as well as Israel’s covert campaign inside Iran, including cyber-attacks, the assassination of nuclear scientists, and explosions at nuclear facilities.

Is there a way back from the “hybrid warfare”? Or will it doom the talks for a renewal of the 2015 nuclear agreement, followed by overt Israeli military action against Tehran? Can Iran’s regime withstand pressure, including protests by its own people over economic and social issues?