The interesting thing about "Palestinians” is that so few of the West Bank Arabs thought of themselves as such before 1967. It post-dates the founding of the PLO: Palestine had a national liberation movement before it had a nationality. Likewise, because the Arab League designated Yasser Arafat as a head of state, we’ve spent 30 years trying to create a state for him to be head of.
This is one of those bullshit things that Zionists love to spew that has absolutely no basis in reality whatsoever
We considered ourselves Palestinians before 1967
We considered ourselves Palestinian before the British Mandate
Beyond that, however, is that even if -a huge, just false if- the term Palestinian didn’t exist pre-1967, it in no way delegitimizes the Palestinian struggle to begin with, or negates the fact that hundreds of thousands of people were uprooted from their homes, and that hundreds of towns and cities were demolished to make way for Israel and the new-born Israelis…who themselves simply did not exist prior to 1948
But regardless, the bs about Palestinians not identifying as Palestinians before 1967 is just that - bullshit.
What people fail to take into account, however, is that under the Ottoman Empire, most people did identify as Arab amongst each other, and would simply refer to themselves as being an Arab from one region or another…because we were relatively united, in that we weren’t separated by arbitrary borders drawn up by the West. People were “Arab” first, and Palestinian/Syrian/Etc second.
Despite this, each region still had its own unique history and culture, and the Arab subjects of the Ottoman empire were not some monolithic entity.
Then comes WWI, the fall of the Ottoman Empire, and the Sykes–Picot agreement that saw the arbitrary lines you see today drawn up with various groups forced to identify in ways they hadn’t needed to before, adopting a Wester standard of identity and nationalism
That’s the simplified gist of it, anyways
Palestinians were always Palestinian, and always identified as Palestinian. We simply clung to our identity even more tightly as Western and Zionist powers took it upon themselves to attempt to strip us of our heritage and culture.