Belize: The ‘safest’ place to escape radiation amid a nuclear attack
There was a long period of time where the threat of nuclear war largely faded into the background. The collapse of the Soviet Union signaled the end of the Cold War and with it the decades-long risk of nuclear escalation between the US and the USSR. But the possibility of a nuclear winter could be looming large once more. The threat is now multilateral, and all it would take is a single error to launch the world into a chain of nuclear events. The United States, the Russian Federation, China, the United Kingdom, and France are all recognized as nuclear weapon states, while North Korea, India, and Pakistan all claim to be in possession of nuclear arms as well. Iran is also believed by some to have ambitions towards becoming a nuclear state, and there have been any number of concerns that Israel is secretly harboring nuclear weapons as well. Things aren’t looking promising for the future either. With Russia and the United States both pulling out of the long-running START treaty, we could be looking at another arms race with no handrails.
But while countries throughout the developed world spent years outfitting themselves with shelters designed to protect their civilians in the long-term wake of a nuclear attack, it could be countries that have put almost no effort into planning that are best equipped to weather a nuclear winter. Belize has recently become one of the most popular tropical vacation destinations in the world, and that’s due in large part to the majesty of their cave networks. Actun Tunichil Muknal has regularly been called the most beautiful sacred cave in the world, and the Mayas who once occupied the land believed these deep, dark caverns were portals to the afterlife.
It’s because of these cave networks that travel writer Author Lan Sluder believes Belize could be the safest place to avoid the effects of a nuclear attack. Belize is unlikely to be ground zero for a nuclear attack, but winds would likely bring nuclear fallout to the country if an attack were staged against the United States. Belize has the most extensive underground cave networks in Central America, and those could provide meaningful shelter against radiation on the surface, but that’s not the only reason Belize is such an ideal location. The low population density of the country means that there would be less concerns about fighting for scarce resources, and the steady and comfortable sub-tropical climate that lasts throughout the year limits the need for special equipment or power. In a situation where man was forced to do without the modern technologies we’ve come to rely on, Belize offers potentially the best opportunities around.
Ironically, the same circumstances that make Belize such a great place to vacation also makes it the perfect spot to go if the worst happens. If you’re curious about Belize – both in terms of its value as an escape hatch and a destination travel spot – be sure to pick up The Ultimate Belize Bucket List.