Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu faces frustration over how the conflict with Hamas is winding down, both from the Israeli public and from parties that wanted harsher action against Gaza's Islamist rulers.
Two political parties that take a harder line on Palestinians than Mr. Netanyahu's Likud faction saw an upswing in support in a new poll published Friday in the Israeli daily Maariv. The survey also found 58% of Israeli Jews believe it was a mistake for the government to accept an open-ended cease-fire with Hamas this week, while 61% don't think the prime minister achieved his goal of prolonged quiet.
"I think that there is a general atmosphere of disappointment after 50 days of war, 72 victims, billions of shekels lost, we are back at square one,'' said Likud parliament member Danny Danon, a leading critic who Mr. Netanyahu fired as deputy defense minister early on in the conflict. "You cannot ignore the fact that it's problematic."
Mr. Danon has called for a meeting of Likud's central committee within two weeks to discuss the results of the Gaza conflict and he predicted that the prime minister will face stiff criticism over his handling of it.
Mr. Netanyahu's governing coalition, formed after elections in 2013, has always been potentially unstable because of ideological disputes between the main partners.
But the rising criticism from right-wing allies within the government could force the prime minister into calling early elections that may produce a government with an even tougher line against concessions to the Palestinians. It could also lead him to break up the current coalition in favor of another combination of parties.
Sam Lehman-Wilzig, a political-science professor at Bar Ilan University in Israel, said Mr. Netanyahu's decision to pull troops out of Gaza after a ground offensive has highlighted how much of his party is more hawkish than he is.
Mr. Netanyahu declared in a news conference on Wednesday that Israel had delivered a crushing blow to Hamas in the offensive dubbed "Operation Protective Edge" and that Hamas got no concessions. He said calls by rival politicians to reoccupy Gaza for an all-out defeat of Hamas were "populist" and "unrealistic," adding that eviscerating the group is "very difficult."
Hard-line Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman cautioned in a Facebook post on the same day as Mr. Netanyahu's news conference that upcoming cease-fire talks wouldn't boost Israeli security because "it's impossible to reach an arrangement with Hamas.'' Mr. Lieberman, another critic of Mr. Netanyahu's handling of the conflict, was one of those who called for a re-occupation of Gaza.
"I think Netanyahu needs a protective edge internally with the rest of his party," Mr. Lehman-Wilzig said. "More and more people are realizing he's out of sync with views on national security.''
The poll commissioned by Maariv showed rising popular support for two parties more hawkish than Likud based on a gauge of how many seats the those parties would get in the 120-member parliament if new elections were held now.
One of them was Jewish Home, the pro-settler party of Economy Minister Naftali Bennett, who was another frequent critic of Mr. Netanyahu during the war. It got 18 seats, up from the 12 it actually received in the last election. Yisrael Beiteinu, headed by Mr. Lieberman, got 17, up from 11. Likud also gained, up to 32 from 20 in the poll conducted on Wednesday night after Mr. Netanyahu spoke.
Another poll published Thursday in the Haaretz daily found a similar rise in support for Mr. Bennet's party but no gains for Mr. Lieberman's party. That poll indicated that the public considers the Israel-Hamas conflict a draw and showed declining public approval of Mr. Netanyahu. His approval rating fell to 50% from 77% in a poll on Aug. 5, at the height of Israel's ground offensive in Gaza. The poll surveyed 464 Israelis on Aug. 27 and had a margin of error of 4.64%.
Tal Schneider, an Israeli political analyst, cautioned the current polls reflected still-volatile opinion of a public that hasn't recovered from the trauma of battle.
"People are being asked questions under fire,'' she said. The results "reflect nationalism and militarism." She said that Mr. Netanyahu's approval ratings remain strong and that the reluctance of political rivals such as Messrs. Lieberman and Bennett to bolt the coalition undercuts their criticism.
In a sense, analysts said Mr. Netanyahu's political fate is at the mercy of Hamas and whether the cease-fire holds. His standing is likely to suffer further if he is perceived to be overly generous with truce terms, Mr. Lehman-Wilzig said. Renewed rocket fire would also be a blow.
"If they start shooting in six months, I would say Netanyahu is dead meat, said Mr. Lehman-Wilzig. "If there's quiet, he'll be in decent shape. You can't judge immediately how it's going to work out.''
Dani Dayan, the former chairman of the Yesha Council which represents many Jewish settlers in the West Bank, said he believes that Mr. Netanyahu will regain his political footing in the long term.
"The cease-fire is a substantial factor,'' he said.