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“We methodically hurt the ones who do want peace. We help raise the radical elements instead. The result of this policy could be the collapse of the Palestinian Authority government very rapidly, which would create the worst intifada we’ve seen thus far. We are not far from it,” Mr. Olmert said.

Defiant, popular Netanyahu

Mr. Olmert’s government conducted a year of peace talks with Mr. Abbas in 2008 that resulted in closing many gaps but no final accord.

Mr. Netanyahu showed no signs of bending. Speaking to his Cabinet, Mr. Netanyahu said the celebrations in Gaza over the weekend exposed “the true face of our enemies.”

“They have no intention of compromising with us. They want to destroy our country, but they will obviously fail,” he said.

He also said it was “interesting” that Mr. Abbas “has issued no condemnation” of the Hamas comments. “To my regret, he strives for unity with the same Hamas that is supported by Iran.”

Mr. Netanyahu’s tough approach has gone over well with the Israeli public.

With elections scheduled for Jan. 22, opinion polls forecast Mr. Netanyahu winning re-election as leader of a coalition dominated by hard-line nationalist and religious parties.

The Palestinians have launched two uprisings against Israeli occupation.

The first erupted 25 years ago, on Dec. 9, 1987, and lasted nearly six years. The second, deadlier uprising broke out in late 2000 and stretched for about five years. More than 3,000 Palestinians and more than 1,000 Israelis died in the fighting.

Palestinian officials in the West Bank have signaled that they have no desire to return to the days of the uprising, when armed militant gangs controlled Palestinian cities, Israeli military raids were common and Israeli troops strictly controlled movement throughout the West Bank.

“We are not ready for war. The only way forward is peace,” Mr. Abbas told Arab leaders at a gathering in Qatar on Sunday.