In OTL, Manchukuo was invaded by the Soviets in the final days of World War II due to being a Japanese puppet state. It ceased to exist, and the Manchus have no homeland today.
But what if Manchukuo survived even with the fall of the Imperial Japanese government?
The POD is this. Many Japanese and Manchukuo officials were dissatisfied with the handling of the war. These, along with some Kwantung Army officials, saw the writing on the wall, and eager to save their skins, asked Pu Yi, the Emperor of Manchukuo, to say if he is willing to break ties with Japan. Pu Yi said that, disgusted that Manchukuo was not the country he wanted, a free, prosperous country, he decided to act.
So, on March 3, 1945, the "Blood Purge" begins. Several officials, Manchurian or Japanese, who were thought to be too pro-Japanese, were killed. Pu Yi then sent feelers to the Allies and said that he will join them against Japan but he insisted that Manchukuo is neither a puppet state of Japan nor willing to rejoin China. Chiang Kai-Shek was unsure what to do. In the end, the Allied leaders decided that Manchukuo be given its independence after all. Stalin agreed, since it allowed Outer Mongolia, its satellite state, to be given recognition from China.
Japan loses the war. The Japanese people couldn't accept that their most loyal state betray them, along with their officials.
Meanwhile, many of the surviving pro-Japanese Manchukuo officials were tried by the new Manchukuo government, and many were handed over to the Allies. Certain officials such as Shiro Ishii were executed, but not before they gave crucial information to the Allies.
Meanwhile, the Koreans finally got their independence. The fact that Manchuria finally turned its back on the Japanese made it easier for the Provisional Government to occupy all of Korea. The Korean Imperial Family were pardoned, thanks to Pu Yi and his influence, though not one of them wanted to go back to the throne, yet.
Manchukuo then officially renamed itself simply as Manchuria. It will be the bastion of anti-Communism. Chiang Kai Shek will defeat the Chinese Communists, with Mao Zedong killed and the rest fleeing to Mongolia and Xinjiang, the latter becoming the Uyghur SSR of the Soviet Union. Unfortunately, the Guomindang's rule is short-lived, because it failed to solve the problems of China. A new faction that was both anti-Communist and anti-Guomindang, called the People's Party, have declared once more for a United Provinces of China. Popular enough, it sent the Nationalists fleeing to Hainan and Taiwan. Tibet suddenly requested to join the Commonwealth, and the British and Indians, after some reluctance, accepted it.
Stalin then tested Manchukuo's resolve. Unfortunately, the Americans also put troops into Manchuria as well as Korea. Stalin, after a few dogfights in the Amur river, have to back down.
Today, Manchukuo or Manchuria is again the new frontier of Asia. Some Chinese refugees have found Manchukuo as a third option to either the UPC or the ROC. The United Provinces is somewhat less democratic than the ROC, though it is not a total police state. Manchuria is the fourth largest economy in East Asia, after China, Japan, and Korea. And it is a shining example of racial harmony.
- United Provinces of China
- Republic of China