Is black. American Renaissance News: Major Gets 171â„2 Years in Iraq Contract Case Almost every suspect comes from the same background: African-Americans who rose from childhood poverty to successful military careers. Since then [December 2006], reams of court documents from overlapping cases reveal a pattern of corruption. Army contracting officers, almost all of them African Americans, reached out to African-American businessmen, seeking bribes in exchange for contracting deals. By the time investigators were closing in, the Cockerham scheme allegedly had spread to new players, minority contractors launched by retired African-American soldiers who already had been vetted by the Pentagon. Maj. Cockerham allegedly hoped to harvest future bribes from them.