A coalition of the grieving, and the frustrated

GRABOVO, Ukraine -- They're calling it the coalition of the grieving and, says Mark Phillips, of the frustrated.

The lack of any progress in the search for the missing remains of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 victims has driven both the Dutch and the Australians to announce plans to try and send security contingents into the battleground of eastern Ukraine.

When Flight 17 fell to the ground on July 17 in territory held by pro-Russian rebels, the plane's 298 passengers and crew -- most of them were Dutch citizens -- all died. U.S. intelligence agencies believe the rebels likely fired a surface-to-air missile at the civilian jetliner, possibly mistaking it for a Ukrainian military aircraft.

The security situation in the region around the crashsite and the rebel-held city of Donetsk, just to the west, is deteriorating. Ukraine's military said Friday that its forces had come under fire from pro-Russian separatists -- and, they said, artillery from the Russian side of the border.

The hope is that security teams from the Netherlands and Australia, and possibly elsewhere in Europe, can secure the site and help intensify the search. Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said Friday that he was close to an agreement with Ukrainian officials to send in as many as 90 federal police.

But the terms of any deal the two nations might reach with the central government in Kiev -- which doesn't control the crash site or the area around it -- or the separatist militants who do, remains a mystery.

The only international effort at finding the missing bodies, or parts of bodies, thus far has come from the Red Cross. The charity's workers said they came to try to lend some dignity, speed and thoroughness to a search that so far has shown none of those qualities.

Oran Finnigan of the Red Cross forensic service told CBS News the objective was, "to ensure that these remains are collected in a dignified manner as soon as possible."

But on Thursday, at least, they lacked coordination, and as the first group of European observers to arrive at the sprawling crash site worries, there is plenty to search for.

"There are some telltale signs that I don't really want to get into that indicate the existence of human remains," said Michael Borkiurkiw, of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

The local emergency workers who had collected the bulk of the victims' remains left days ago.

If and when Australian and Dutch security personnel do arrive, a largely empty crash site may await them. And it stretches for miles and miles.

Even now, the OSCE observers, few Malaysian investigators and one Australian official on the scene continue to discover previously unseen chunks of the Boeing 777's wreckage.

Deep in the woods, about a mile from the main crash site, the inspectors recently came across a huge piece of the shattered fuselage that they hadn't seen before.

A week after the crash, a vast swath of once-picturesque farmland needs a thorough search for the destroyed remains of both human being and aircraft.

That hasn't yet begun to happen.

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