For all the faults of the Japanese in World War II, it is noteworthy that their former colonies still have close business ties with Japan and are by far the wealthiest nations in the world that are neither in Europe nor were colonized by the English.
In other words, despite many shortcomings Japan provided capable administration in their colonies (primarily Korea and Taiwan) and set the groundwork for these nations to be strong and prosperous today.
For that matter, despite harsh treatment of the natives, Germany's former colony of Namibia is widely regarded as one of the best run nations in sub-Saharan Africa. (After World War I, of course, Britain replaced Germany as the colonial power.)
As just one example, imperial Japan was almost entirely responsible for educating the Korean people.
So it's not surprising that some of the locals would support them.
As for what is going on with Russia and Ukraine today, I have some ideas but I won't go into them here, except to note that both Russia and Ukraine have longstanding issues with corruption, and it wouldn't surprise me if Putin is taking advantage of current events to clean house in Russia - blaming the war for purges that he wanted to make anyhow but which were not previously politically feasible.